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Mendocino County Today: Monday, Oct. 9, 2017

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Ukiah, California: October 9, 2017

On Monday, October 9, 2017, a major fire broke out in Redwood Valley and Potter Valley. There have been mandatory evacuations in Redwood Valley (all of the Redwood Valley Floor) south to Highway 20. The Emergency Operations Center (EOC) has been activated and is being operated by the Office of Emergency Services (OES) with the assistance of the Executive Office.

There are shelters open at Ukiah High School, Ukiah Fairgrounds for animals and livestock, as well as Ukiah Animal Shelter. Willits has a shelter in place at the Civic Center. The County is currently accessing needs for additional shelters, the County will provide more information as if becomes available.

For up to date fire information, evacuations notices or to locate family at a shelter, please contact the EOC at (707) 467-6428.

Carmel J. Angelo

Chief Executive Officer

Gregory Van Patten, Incident PIO

Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office

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A MAJOR FIRE is burning north from Redwood Valley towards Willits and Potter Valley.

Redwood Fire (Calfire photo)

EVACUATION CENTERS are being set up, one at Ukiah High School.

HIGHWAY 101 between Uva Dr and the Willits Bypass has been closed, according to CHP Dispatch (Ukiah).

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Redwood Valley on fire Monday morning

What is now being called the Redwood Complex Fire was spreading from Redwood Valley up the Willits Grade in the middle of the night as emergency personnel rush to evacuate local residents. Highway 101 is closed from Uva Drive to the Ridgewood Grade. Check our Facebook page at for updates.

4:35 a.m. - Mendocino County Sheriff’s Dept: 101 closed from Uva North to Ridgewood Grade. All Redwood Valley south of School Way to Hwy 20 east to Horseshoe Circle under EVAC WARNING

4:30 a.m. - Passenger vehicles are moving west at a steady clip on East Road being evacuated from both East and West Road through wee hours of night.

The massive fire stretches from RV to Willits Grade.

According to MSCO Lt. Shannon Barney the fire is thought to have started in PV but progressed west.

As of 4 am the fire crested at top of ridge at Road I with calmer winds now but hot spots developing.

Evacuations north of School Way, East and West Roads, Tomki to Canyon Road, Golden Rule, Reeves Canyons due to one-way in and out. Fire on East and west sides of 101.

Reports of unknown number of structures burned. 1 injury, status unknown. Priorities are evacuations, sheriffs say.

Sheriff’s ask people to please refrain from calling Howard Forest and ask public to be patient as responders CHP and MCSO focus on evacuations.

One resident of Tomki Road says his house has burned down.

Air tankers, helicopters can’t help until first light.

Flames seen look 100 feet high.

4 a.m. - Huge fire raging in Redwood Valley at this hour. Roads throughout the area closed and evacuation centers have been set up at Ukiah High School and Ukiah Conference Center. Large and small animal refuge has been set up at the Ukiah fairgrounds. Sheriff Allman says so far no cause, no estimate of loss of homes. North of School Way and east of West Road has been evacuated, Tomki Road north to Canyon Road has beer evacuated, Golden Rule has been evacuated and Reeves Canyon, only because it is a one-way out area, not because there is fire there at this time. Structures have been burned but no details. No details yet on injuries. CALFIRE Redwood Valley Fire, Sheriffs all on scene.

(courtesy Ukiah Daily Journal)

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Wind-whipped fires break out across Sonoma County

Wind-whipped fires burned into parts of Santa Rosa and the Sonoma Valley early Monday morning, destroying multiple homes in neighborhoods to the north and southeast of Santa Rosa.

In Santa Rosa, the fire burned through the Sky Farm subdivision above Santa Rosa’s Fountaingrove neighborhood and raced down the hill toward the Larkfield-Wikiup area. Homes surrounding Cardinal Newman High School were burned, although the high school survived. Santa Rosa’s historic round barn, at the gateway to Fountaingrove, was also burned, as was the Journey’s End mobile home park to the north of Kaiser Permanente’s hospital in Santa Rosa and multiple homes along Hopper Lane.

Hopper Lane area of Santa Rosa, October 9, 2017 (photo by Kent Porter/Press Democrat)

Authorities were evacuating Sutter Santa Rosa hospital at 1:30 a.m. Traffic was backed up at multiple intersections in the Larkfield and Wikiup areas. Many people had abandoned their cars in the streets to flee the flames.

By 3 a.m. flames had jumped Highway 101 on the fire’s westward march, as strong winds pushed ash and smoke over a wide area of the city.

Damage was also widespread in Kenwood, where multiple homes were destroyed on both sides of Highway 12.

An emergency evacuation center was full at the Finley Community Center in west Santa Rosa, located at 2060 W. College Ave. Cars filled the parking lot shortly before 3 a.m. Monday and traffic was stopped trying to turn into the center.

Authorities were directing evacuees to the Santa Rosa Veterans Memorial Building, 1351 Maple Ave. The Petaluma Community Center, at 320 N. McDowell Blvd., was also opened as an evacuation center. The Sonoma County Fairgrounds is open for people with large animals. Bridge of Faith church, at 920 Link Lane in Santa Rosa, also opened its doors to evacuees.

In the Sonoma Valley, Ramekins culinary school and inn, 450 W. Spain St., was open as a shelter.

Mandatory evacuations were ordered from a wildfire reported between Calistoga and Santa Rosa, to the east of Porter Creek Road and Petrified Forest Road, the Sonoma County Sheriff’s Office announced shortly after 11 p.m.

Evacuations were ordered along Porter Creek, Petrified Forest, Franz Valley and Mountain Home Ranch roads. Deputies were dispatched to help firefighters and CHP officers with evacuations.

“If you live in this area, please be alert for the danger,” the Sheriff’s Office said shortly after 11 p.m. “We are not on scene yet and haven’t been able to determine the best evacuation route.”

Many trees were down on Calistoga Road and 911 lines were inundated with callers reporting smoke. Dispatchers asked the public to refrain from calling, unless they were facing an immediate emergency.

Multiple fires broke out Sunday night as strong winds buffeted the area. In Sonoma County, fires were reported in Santa Rosa, at Mark West Springs and Riebli roads; in Windsor at Shiloh Road and Conde Lane; in Sebastopol at Highway 116 and Fredericks Road; in Kenwood, on Lawndale Road; and in Glen Ellen, on Dunbar Road.

Multiple structures were burning early Monday near downtown Kenwood, where the fire had crossed over Sonoma Creek. Fires were burning on both sides of Highway 12 in swirling winds, with gusts of 5o to 60 miles per hour. Multiple structures were also burning on Adobe Canyon Road, east of Kenwood across Highway 12.

In Napa County, firefighters were battling a 200 acre fire off Atlas Peak Road south of Lake Berryessa, Cal Fire reported.

(courtesy Press Democrat)

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GOVERNOR DECLARES EMERGENCY as wildfires ravage Sonoma and Napa counties, forcing mass evacuations in wine country

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THE UKIAH SHELTER FANTASTIC FELINE EVENT is extended for the coming week!

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by Malcolm Macdonald

After a four hour public hearing on October 3rd, the Fort Bragg City Council voted to deny an appeal of a Planning Commission decision regarding Hospitality House, the controversial non-profit that provides housing to two dozen people a night as well as meals to more. The Planning Commission had voted, by a 3-2 margin, in August, to implement eighteen special conditions for Hospitality House after that part of the overall organization known as Mendocino Coast Hospitality Center (MCHC) was found to be in violation of its use permit. Readers can look back at the August 30th edition of the AVA for a complete list of the special conditions.

At the October 3rd meeting City Councilmen Bernie Norvell and Mike Cimolino initially balked at upholding the Planning Commission decision, presumably because they, along with the appellants to that decision, did not feel the eighteen special conditions went far enough. Though Hospitality Center Board of Directors President Lynelle Johnson and the MCHC Board's attorney, Pamela Cohen, both made remarks to the effect that Hospitality House had been pushed into a corner, the Hospitality Board seemingly doesn't get it. They don't see the corner that residents and business owners in the vicinity of Hospitality House have been shoved into: either tolerate the nearly endless misconduct of Hospitality House clients or be called something akin to prejudiced know-nothings by the entrenched, yet highly vocal, cadre of Mendo-libbers who often show up in droves (or in the case of October 3rd, a small head-bobbing herd) to voice support for organizations like “Hospitality.”

To be extremely clear about the misconduct issue, MCHC's attorney has stated that the City of Fort Bragg has “not established any connection between Hospitality House's services and conduct in the vicinity that might be considered a nuisance.” Those nuisances were enumerated in Planning Commission documents as including fighting, aggressive panhandling, loitering, shouting, arguing, cursing, littering, drunkenness, drug use, obstruction of sidewalks, defecating on private property, and urinating in public. The list goes on and has been witnessed by numerous business owners, residents, City Council members, police officers and this writer. The fact that Hospitality House leadership continues to deny these simple truths in front of the City Council and its Planning Commission, has to make anyone who lives, works, shops, or visits the alleys and streets near Hospitality House skeptical about its future compliance with the special conditions placed upon it.

Councilmembers Norvell and Cimolino only went along with upholding the Planning Commission's decision after Mayor Lindy Peters and Vice-Mayor Will Lee agreed to set up an ad hoc committee to address the Hospitality House situation. A committee which, hopefully, will give citizens an ongoing voice in the matter. Norvell also pressed for and got the council, as a whole, to refund the $1,000 fee required from the Fort Bragg citizens (twenty-nine of them) who filed the appeal.

To be sure the passage of Sheriff Tom Allman's Measure B this November will help alleviate a bit of the street level homeless/mental health problems that have swirled from a nuisance to a Category 3 storm in Fort Bragg. However, the members of MCHC's Board of Directors are almost all folks who, while well-intentioned, reside in fine houses in Mendocino or well-heeled locales like Frog Pond Road, south of Little River. On an hour to hour, day to day, night after night basis these people are not in tune with what actually goes on in Hospitality House and on the alleys and streets adjacent to it. The Board of Directors of Hospitality House sees the litany of loitering, littering, drunkenness, drug use, verbal abuse, and overall exotic behaviors that oozes out onto the surrounding neighborhoods around Hospitality House as a community problem, to be dealt with and solved by everyone else — but them.

The solace that can be taken by the business owners and residents in the vicinity of Hospitality House lies in the addition of the eighteen special conditions to HH's use permit. If Hospitality continues to fail to live up to those conditions, which are really nothing more than common sense guidelines, the operation can be held to further, and more serious, account.

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THE FAILURE of Fort Bragg to pull Hospitality House's use permit isn't surprising, especially in the cringing civic context of Mendocino County, but one has to wonder how many violations of basic operating standards does HH have to violate before the City moves on them? And HH's hire of a lawyer to do its talking for them adds a major insult to Fort Bragg's ongoing injury.

Judy Valadao nicely summed up the ongoing fiasco:

"In my opinion the Hospitality House now has the green light to do as they please. Their attorney made that perfectly clear when she said 'we will not bend'.”

"It was surprising to me that those who claim to want to help the clients of The House weren’t there in mass to support the appeal. After all the appeal was about the clients and additions that could have made things better for everyone involved.

"During the entire process I wondered why the Hospitality people weren’t talking more about what they could do to improve things for the clients. Instead they pointed out they aren’t responsible for the homeless unless they are on House property. Then said they aren’t going to bend to the request to allow the homeless a place to sit or rest during the day. They won’t even keep the restroom open during the daytime. Seems to me those who are in charge of a Homeless Shelter really aren’t responsible for the homeless. Why then are they getting funds from the county to be used for the homeless that they aren’t responsible for?

"Who are the real losers in the end?"

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Comedy Show at Lauren’s Restaurant, Saturday, Oct. 14

Starring Sam O’Brien and Jerry Cox

Saturday, October 14, 3:30-4:45pm

Two entertaining Deep-enders, Jerry Cox and Sam O’Brien, present an hour of jokes and stand-up. Beer/wine available. No cover. Lauren’s Restaurant, downtown Boonville.

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We are glad that the Mendocino County Board of Supervisors decided to continue to contract with CALFIRE for emergency dispatch services throughout the county.

While we generally agree that many public services need to be put out for bid, these critical dispatch services are really one of CALFIRE’s specialties and they’ve been doing a fine job for years.

Local firefighters and the Sheriff’s department said they thought CALFIRE was the best agency for the job with Sheriff Allman even telling the supervisors that CALFIRE “wrote the book” on the latest in emergency dispatch services. Now the supervisors will negotiate with CALFIRE to enhance and unify the contracted services.

Next the supervisors will need to choose an ambulance service for the inland county. That task will be especially important as rural areas must often subsidize ambulances. Just last month, Covelo lost its private sector ambulance service for lack of funding and is now back to depending on its local fire department for emergency transportation, along with air medical services. Not to say that local fire departments don’t do a fine job at providing emergency services, they do, and our county would be lost without them. But having the advanced medical care that ambulances can provide is the best thing for all our rural areas.

(K.C. Meadows. Courtesy, the Ukiah Daily Journal.)

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I agree with this editorial that Calfire should continue to provide dispatch services to Mendocino County. They do a good job and there were no reasons offered to put it out to bid. It should be pointed out that even after most local fire departments, the Sheriff and Supervisors McCowen and Gjerde had pointed out numerous reasons to leave Calfire dispatch as is, Supervisors Dan Hamburg and Carre Brown both voted to put Countywide Dispatch out to bid anyway.

However, at the end of your recent editorial you commented that “advanced medical care that ambulances can provide is the best thing for all our rural areas.”

“Advanced medical care” is usually a reference to paramedics on board the ambulance. No doubt that paramedics can perform more medical procedures than EMTs and are by their nature “the best thing.”

But “the best thing” comes at a substantial cost. Providing one fully-staffed 24/7 “advanced” ambulance is estimated to cost about $1 million a year. Yet ambulance services, like most medical providers lately, have trouble covering their costs with today’s crazy insurance arrangements.

Medicare, Medi-Cal and private insurance cover only pennies on the dollar — and a significant number of ambulance “customers” who are uninsured can’t or won’t pay. Anderson Valley’s VOLUNTEER ambulance service only covers its costs with donations and memberships — and that’s with volunteers doing most of the work.

I’m not against providing “advanced medical care” wherever it can be afforded. But several local people I know who are experienced in emergency services have told me that there are very few cases where “advanced medical care” actually improved patient outcome.

I follow these things very closely and I have yet to see any financial analysis of what kinds of calls the proposed “exclusive operating area” will service, how much it will cost, what the response times will be, how they will provide round the clock paramedics, what kinds of requirements and burdens might be put on other emergency responders, what kinds of service guarantees there will be, or how much it should or will cost to provide advanced services to our relatively small, far-flung inland population.

As you noted, Verihealth recently abandoned Covelo “for lack of funding.” What’s to prevent a privatized corporate ambulance service from abandoning Mendocino County “for lack of funding” half-way into the contract? More money? Where will it come from?

Given that the Supervisors were so ill- and under-informed about dispatch before they barely corrected themselves, I’m worried that the County is rushing into this Exclusive Operating Area idea without considering all the facts and factors involved.

Advanced medical care might be “the best thing” but not if it costs too much or the other elements of the emergency response system are negatively affected.

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LITTLE DOG SAYS, “Skrag invited me over a drink yesterday. I'm thinking a shot of JD or at least Evan. But I get there and he turns on the hose and says, ‘Help yourself, suckah!’ and takes off. I try to get along with the dude and all I get is bad jokes.”

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BETSY CAWN on the sudden disappearance of Alan Flora: "Lake’s magic or Mendo’s mumbo-jumbo? No diff on this side of the Cow — the 'boy wonder' leaves everyone wondering, again! Look for some mess that his departure protects from scrutiny, like the recent (unexplained/unjustified) department head raises, and the extended paid leave for the head of the probation department, the mental health services mysteries, and marijuana merry-go-round that theoretically empowered the expansion of employee services without any reservation of commitment to establish actual revenue achievements. Wheee!"

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THE ANDERSON VALLEY SENIOR CENTER’S once-a month trip to Santa Rosa for shopping at Costco, thrift stores, etc. (plus lunch!) was enjoyed by:

(Top Row): Bonnie, Joan, Karen, Ellen, Karin, Marti

(Bottom Row): Dolly, Joy

Anyone interested in the Center’s monthly Santa Rosa trips/outings should contact driver Dolly at: (760) 861-4046.

(Photo/Item by Bonnie Johnson)

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HIGH SCHOOL REUNION. I recognized exactly three people from my high school class of '57, and remembered three more when they remembered themselves to me. Janet Waite approached, "Do you remember that night…" Yes, I said, and you're as beautiful now and you were then. She laughed and said, "Weren't you in the paper for beating someone up?" Uh, not exactly, but…" And before I could flesh that one out with the Nixonion disclaimer, "Mistakes were made," she said, "I hear you are an extreme leftist. I'm extreme the other way." Which, I believe, is against the law in Marin, but I wasn't about to argue with the sweeter memory of young us on a ridge one summer night looking out at the city lights, life's tumult still in front of us. I was happy to see her looking fit and tan (and undoubtedly rich), a matronly Marin Trumpet, lost in the Fox wilderness. I'd come to see my old center fielder, Don "Donnie" Johnson, with whom all these years I'd enjoyed a kind of unconscious psychic connection, which he perfectly described as "I knew you were out there somewhere." I knew he was out there somewhere, too. We talked sports, then and now. Mr. J, a dominant hoopster in his youth, worked for years with the City and County of San Francisco and, in his off hours, coached youth basketball as it's played in the city at a very high level, specifically the Pro-Am League at Kezar. The reunion afternoon, convened at a golf club in San Marin, a community that did not exist in my youth, was mildly disorienting. When I left high school I seldom thought about it, and hadn't thought about specific classmates, except for Donnie Johnson, since. Saturday was like being thrown from one end to the other inside a reverse time machine. I'm already looking forward to the 70th.

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I WAS LOOKING forward to the new HBO series "Deuce," by the same people who brought us the brilliant, "The Wire," until I saw the first episode the other night. It's unrelievedly sordid only made interesting with lots of snappy dialogue from the truly great writer, Richard Price. But the events and the freaks depicted seem only tangentially related and all involve unattractive, charmless criminals circa 1972. In fact everyone in the thing is unattractive, including a prostitute of the heart of gold variety, a fantasy the writers still apparently cling to. And, at this point in our porn-soaked history, do we really need to watch what the prostitute does to understand how she makes her living? The only good guy, the guy around whom the series is built, is either mildly retarded or implausibly unlucky, getting himself into more life-threatening situations in one night tending bar than even criminals get themselves into over a life of crime. We know he's a good guy because he checks on his sleeping kids before he goes out to track down his wife. She's shooting pool with a couple of scumbags whose company she prefers to that of her husband and children. I'm going to give Deuce another chance, but I'm not optimistic.

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Mike Koepf sends along the latest photo of an elk in Elk.

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INTRIGUING update in the current Mendocino County Observer by Jayma Shields Spence. She writes: "Asha Kreimer, 26 years old, went missing from a Point Arena cafe in 2015. The Sheriff's Office was told by her family recently that she may have taken an assumed name since then. The Mendocino County Sheriff's Office has updated a two-year-old missing person case, receiving new information…"

THE SHERIFF'S OFFICE hasn't said what the new information is, but apparently it involves a suspicion at least that Ms. Kreimer is among the living. The following describes the young woman's improbable disappearance:

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(AVA, October of 2015)

ASHA KREMER is a 26-year-old Australian female with dark, long curly hair. She is 5'9", about 120-130 pounds, pretty thin and has olive colored skin. Her mom has flown in from Australia and is searching Point Arena for clues on where Asha was last seen. Asha was experiencing what her mother believes to be bi-polar episodes and spent the day at Fort Bragg hospital being evaluated. She was later released to her boyfriend Jamai Gayle. Jamai (an abbreviation of “Jamaica”?), who lived with Asha in Albion, has told Jeannie that he took Asha for a drive down the coast with Asha's friend Sally. (We suspect that “Gayle” is not Jamai Gayle’s real name — his facebook page indicates that he’s spent a lot of time in Jamaica, specifically a “settlement” in Saint Mary Parish, Jamaica, named “Gayle” where he seems to have adopted the white-rasta affect. His facebook page says his “education” is “graduate of McAteer High School,” a now defunct alternative performing arts school in San Francisco that folded back in 2002 under accusations of poor educational performance and bad management.) An employee at a Coastal Cafe where Asha and Jamai stopped said that Asha seemed agitated and got up to go to the restroom and never came back. Somehow Jamai ended up with Asha's cellphone. No one has seen her since. According to Jeannie, Jamai's story has changed a few times and there are not many clues as to where Asha may be. Please share this info. If you or anyone you know have clues or saw Asha on or after the day she went missing (Monday, September 21, 2015), please email Asha's mom, Jeannie at

(Click to enlarge)

THE MOTHER OF ASHA KREIMER has set up a gofundme account to raise funds to hire a private investigator to try to find her. "Our daughter, sister and friend Asha went missing from Rollerville Cafe in Point Arena, CA on September 21, 2015 around 9:30 am. She was in the middle of a mental health crisis. She did not have ID, money, credit card, phone or any traceable items. She was wearing black skinny jeans and a dark gray hoodie. She was also shoeless. We are incredibly worried for the safety of Asha. We have been searching non stop in the area where she went missing from and haven't got any new leads. She has been missing for nearly a month. We are trying to raise money to hire a private investigator. We have exhausted the beneficial assistance of the local authorities and need to expand the search on a national level. This can be a very expensive service but Asha deserves the best. We miss our daughter, sister and friend more than words can say. We just want to know that Asha is safe and not in any mental turmoil. We miss her loving kindness and quick humor. There is no shame in mental health issues. We are here with open hearts. Please help us find Asha and bring closure to this nightmare."

THIS YOUNG WOMAN, Asha Kreimer, in a state of extreme emotional meltdown, was "evaluated" at Coast Hospital by a representative of our privatized mental health services and pronounced good to go. She has been missing for nearly a month now. From here, looks to us like Ms. Kreimer's boy friend is up for a long, hard look from law enforcement. This troubled young woman sprints off barefooted from the restaurant near Point Arena without her cell phone while Boy Friend does what? Remains seated?


A LOUCHE CHARACTER calling himself Jamai Gayle was badly injured when, westbound, he piled into a large redwood tree off Highway 128 near Navarro Saturday afternoon about 5pm. Gayle's dog was killed on impact. A resident of Albion, Gayle was airlifted to Santa Rosa where he was arrested in the hospital for driving under the influence. The mysterious disappearance of Gayle's girl friend — last seen at the Rollerville Cafe near Point Arena — is under investigation by the Sheriff's Department.

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To the AVA:

Ballot measure B, as printed on the ballot is, "To provide funding for mental health care and facilities in Mendocino County to diagnose and treat mental illness and addiction." However, the full text of Measure B includes a second use of the funds: "Developing a regional behavioral health training facility to be used by behavioral health professionals, public safety and other first responders." I have heard no mention from any of the people sponsoring and supporting Measure B that part of the funds are for a training facility. I agree that people who deal with the mentally ill need to be trained, but I thought we were voting to build and staff a mental health facility, not a training program. Besides, shouldn't "behavioral health professionals" already be trained?

J. Homer, Laytonville

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CATCH OF THE DAY, October 8, 2017

Andrade, Bevilacqua, Bowman

ALEJANDRO ANDRADE, Clearlake/Ukiah. Disorderly conduct-alcohol.

DASEN BEVILACQUA, Ukiah. Vandalism, conspiracy.

JOHN BOWMAN, Fort Bragg. Burglary.

Cooper, Douglas, Frenna

TREVOR COOPER, Redwood Valley/Ukiah. Stalking and threatening bodily injury, offenses while on bail.

ROBERT DOUGLAS, Ukiah. Battery, resisting, county parole violation.

DAVID FRENNA, Ukiah. Under influence.

Galindo, Griffith, Harris

THOMAS GALINDO, Ukiah. Vandalism, probation revocation.

GREGORY GRIFFITH, Merced/Ukiah. DUI, resisting.

KEVIN HARRIS, Ukiah. Probation revocation.

Lugo, Ochoa, Reynaga

YAZMIN LUGO, Ukiah. Domestic battery.

JOSE OCHOA, Willits. Domestic battery.

PEDRO REYNAGA, Calpella. Probation revocation.

Varney, Werner, Wing

JOHN VARNEY, Ukiah. Disorderly conduct-alcohol.

MICHAEL WERNER, Santa Rosa/Ukiah. Disorderly conduct-alcohol.

ERIC WING, Upper Lake/Ukiah. Probation revocation.

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If Trump finishes this term in office and decides to run again, the next go-round is going to sound a lot like the last.

Progressives will get up on their high horse, campus snowflakery will be subjecting campuses to totalitarian repression, Antifa will be wearing uniforms and marching with familiar looking banners, main-stream media pundits will furrow their brows and shake their jowls and harrumph.

Everyone will say that his erratic behavior while in office, his lack of legislative achievement, his clear unsuitability for the Presidency will be his un-doing. Progressives, women, Jorge Ramos, campus Brownshirts and Antifa Fascists will all say that Trump is not a moral man, that everyone knows this, that Trump cannot rule, that Trump must not rule.

And legislative tribunals and law-enforcement investigations and special prosecutors will be busily at work to stymie Trump.

And, everyone, EVERYONE – pundits, political pros, academics, activists – will tell us that Trump’s path to 270 will be via tiny hand-holds and toe-holds on a vertical electoral rock-face and that the chances of him not going splat are slim to none.

What are the odds that Hillary gets the Democratic nomination? What are the odds that she runs as an independent?

What are the odds that Trump gets the nomination? What are the odds he makes it over 270 by a comfortable margin?

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Yup, the marijuana impact certainly is different. Some sections of local rivers don’t even ‘run’- thanks (in part) to pot grows. Sections of the Eel “disappearing”, anyone? Those that do run are largely low, warm and filled with blue-green algae - again, thanks to local grows.

The impact has been well documented, but as a primer: an unsustainable number of people operate marijuana grows, many of whom siphon water from *our* rivers (or feeder streams). These same people are often most concerned with the size of their bud

as an aside

(it’s possible that they feel the need to overcompensate for some other aspect of… well, we can leave that for their psychotherapist… if they ever stop masking sympoms with chemically induced euphoria, sell the oversized truck and dump this year’s grow hoe…).

Anyway… the ‘size matters’ philosophy often encourages growers to over water and over fertilize (not to mention those who use rat poison or pestisides). The excess water flushes a significant amount of this extra fertilizer back into our local water supply. The introduction of such high levels of plant nutrient, coupled with higher water temps from the already low water volume, creates the perfect environment for blue-green algae. voila! local swimming spots that can be deadly to dogs and can make people sick.

I could also talk about local communities who can’t even count on having enough water to flush their toilets during growing season?

We need to tell these people that Nor Cal is a terrible place to grow herb. Our area has a lot of “knowledge” when it comes to cannabis production/genetic modification/extraction, because this was considered a good place to hide grows. Since that’s no longer necessary, I think it’s high time we encourage these people to take their show on the road. They can take their problems down to the central valley - or anywhere else that has the infrastructure, land and labor to deal with them.

We need to tax the crap out of this drug so that we can repair the damage that these criminals (yes, people growing before legalization, or any medical growers who don’t adhere to the regs. are criminals) have caused. We also need that money to provide drug treatment and mental health services, both of which are already inadequate. We need to invest NOW to make sure that we have enough treatment capacity for people who want help quitting or who experience mental health issues (most seriously schizophrenia) as a direct result of using cannabis. We also need to up our law enforcement game. We need LEO’s who are highly qualified and highly trained. Specifically, we need to ensure public safety and eliminate drug related robberies/theft/home-invasions while also engaging in more verbal/non- (or less) lethal deescalation of situations where LEO’s interact with mentally unstable/psychotic individuals.

Somehow I don’t think that the laughably small sq.ft. tax on grow operations will provide money to benefit anyone, let alone the priorities that I’ve mentioned. It’s sad to see how far this beautiful area has fallen in the last decade and even more so to think of the bleak future that this drug haven has in store.

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Macabre spectacle depicting people sentenced to be hanged on the branches of a tree. Illustration inspired by an engraving of 'The miseries of war' of Jacques Callot (1592-1635). Painting by Francesco Simonini (1686-1753), 17th century. Lorraine Historical Museum, Nancy, France

(From Lapham’s Quarterly — Death)

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The tension between a president and his secretary of state has never been this bad.

by Isaac Chotiner

President Trump is (reportedly) very angry that his Secretary of State Rex Tillerson (reportedly) called him a “fucking moron.” Now Trump is reportedly weighing whether to replace Tillerson—mere days after undercutting him via pointlessly aggressive tweets about North Korea. Has the relationship between a president and his chief diplomat ever fallen so far, let alone so fast?

To discuss Tillerson’s bizarre tenure, and much else, I spoke by phone recently with Aaron David Miller, the Middle East program director at the Wilson Center who served in the State Department for 25 years and advised secretaries of state of both parties. During the course of our conversation, which has been edited and condensed for clarity, we discussed Tillerson’s mistakes at the State Department, why it’s so disturbing when a president and secretary of state don’t get along, and why Trump will never allow an effective person to run the department.

Isaac Chotiner: Have you ever seen an equivalent to the Trump-Tillerson relationship among presidents and their secretaries of state?

Aaron David Miller: No. I worked for half a dozen—Shultz to Powell—and for one of my books I interviewed every living secretary of state, including Alexander Haig. There is no precedent either for this kind of public tension, and no precedent for a secretary feeling compelled to respond to press reports the way Secretary Tillerson did the other day. And there is no precedent for open talk of resignation by a secretary of state, at least in the modern period. That also sets this whole episode apart.

Only three secretaries of state in the whole history of the republic have resigned over principle. And only two in the modern period served less than a year and a half. Ed Muskie, when Cyrus Vance resigned in March of 1980 in opposition to Carter’s military mission to rescue the hostages in Iran, served out the rest of his term. Haig served about a year and a half and then left because of tensions within the [Reagan] Cabinet.

What effect will this have on America’s diplomatic posture, even if things are admittedly not going well anyway.

This is the first president in the modern period who failed to have gone even through the motions of empowering the secretary of state as the repository of his policy and as his public voice. When you don’t do that, it is virtually impossible for allies or adversaries to understand what the policy is and who is speaking authoritatively about it. There is no go-to address. You can’t go to the president. You have to go through the secretary of state, which is the reason why presidents create some rule of order on this particular question.

Plus when you have the amount of flowers blooming in the Trump administration—with Nikki Haley talking about all kinds of foreign policy issues, and Jared Kushner managing the Arab-Israeli issue, and Gary Cohn leading the policy on climate change at the U.N., and the president tweeting and making policy unilaterally—it creates the perception abroad that there is a competency issue, and that’s part of the problem now with both the formation and implementation of foreign policy.

But in Trumpland, it is not going to matter who the secretary of state is. Everyone wants Tillerson to resign, but they don’t understand that a secretary of state’s effectiveness is tied to two things. No. 1 is whether the president has his or her back at home, in the shark-infested waters of the Washington bureaucracy, and abroad, because it takes allies and adversaries five minutes to understand whether there is daylight. And if there is, you might as well hang the “Closed for the Season” sign on the effectiveness of the State Department. And No. 2 is whether there are problems in the world that are ripe for resolution. And I would argue to you that the world right now is filled with mission impossibles for the United States. Anyone in Tillerson’s position is going to find himself or herself severely disadvantaged.

OK, but even if that is all true, and Trump is Trump, it seems like maybe Tillerson should still resign because, at the very least, maybe you get someone in who has more of a rapport, and that would be helpful for diplomacy, even if nothing very big or great is remotely possible.

Mattis has a good rapport with Trump, and maybe McMaster does as well. It doesn’t stop the dysfunction.

Of course, but still—

If the reports are true, and it’s hard for me to believe, but no other secretary of state would be empowered in another administration and go to Asia, and make comments about three open channels to North Korea. I am told the president was not aware of this. That’s extraordinary! That’s not on Tillerson—that’s on the system. So, would it help, if you had a secretary of state who agreed with everything the president said, and agreed to reflect everything the president wanted whether it was good or bad? No, it would not be good. We don’t need an echo chamber; you need someone who will carry out the president’s policies but will offer an independent judgement.

Isn’t that what Mattis is?

There’s no question about it. What you need, frankly, is a diplomatic equivalent of Jim Mattis. The problem is that the reason Mattis has influence is that, for one, Trump prides himself on being tough and pro-military, and that toughness resonates with the base. And even Trump understands what he doesn’t know about issues relating to national security and projecting military force abroad. Mattis holds a position that is not even first among equals. It’s almost unprecedented that a Cabinet-level official has this kind of influence. It would be great if you had a diplomatic equivalent of that, but you are not going to be able to duplicate it.

Don’t forget Jared. Anyway, how do you understand Tillerson? Sometimes it seems like he is trying to gut the State Department, and then sometimes it seems like he is one of the adults in the room who is sane.

Isaac, it’s both. Look, you have a guy, Tillerson, who, unlike his predecessors in the modern period, has no government experience at all. Shultz was also from the private sector and was at Bechtel for eight years, but he also had three or four significant positions in the government. Tillerson knows the world, and I would argue has good instincts on Qatar, on Iran, on North Korea, on Russia. They are better than the president’s, in my judgment. But he also doesn’t know the ways of Washington, is unfamiliar with the “building.” The State Department is in bad need of reform, but to make that the first priority … when in fact the first priority was creating a credible image, and basically doing everything he could to ensure that his voice—with the president’s approval—was more authoritative than any other person in the administration, he obviously didn’t help himself.

And I think the decision to create no profile in the media was impossible since so much of what his job is for is public diplomacy. But remember, was he Trump’s first choice? No. Second choice? No. Third choice? Among the four candidates, there was Mitt Romney, Rudy Giuliani, John Bolton, and Jon Huntsman, and maybe more. Tillerson wasn’t included.

David Petraeus, yeah.

* * *


* * *



So many war vets have fought and died for our rights, and peaceful protest is a fundamental one. I know the educated majority understand this simple and profound truth.

That's why I respect the NFL players who are taking a knee and exercising their rights. It's an American tradition, like Mohamed Ali and others who followed their conscience to oppose tyranny.

It's a fact that widespread systemic civil rights violations have been going on for many decades here, the US Dept. of Justice found.

Now, these murders of unarmed citizens, by cops is too much. Besides jury verdicts, the taxpayers are out paying millions in wrongful death suits. It's crazy to train the cops to kill, when there are non-lethal means to subdue the problem perps or the mistaken citizens.

The videos of insanely angry cops, killing for no good reason, have shocked this nation’s conscience. I'm grateful to those who stand, sit, kneel or work on any level to make this world a better place. It's their right and duty.

Shame on the ignorant hicks who refuse to grasp compassion or empathy, especially for those who are less fortunate or oppressed. You Suck!

Best Regards,

Rob Mahon


PS. Double shame for Trump and his ongoing verbal abuse-athon, especially his Puerto Rico remarks. 35% approval rate, not mentioned on NPR or most mainstream ho media. Sickness.

* * *


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The Ukiah Animal Shelter is located at 298 Plant Road in Ukiah; adoption hours are Tuesday - Saturday 10 am to 4:30 pm and Wednesday till 6:30 pm. To view photos and bios of our adoptable dogs and cats, please us visit online at or visit the shelter. Join us the 2nd Saturday of every month for our "Empty the Shelter" pack walk and help us get every dog out for some exercise! For more information about adoptions please call 707-467-6453.

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Oct. 10, 1967 — Police swept through the Haight-Ashbury yesterday in a daylight search for school truants that netted 32 thoroughly confused hippies, including the 17-year-old son of Timothy Leary, the Pied Piper of the psychedelic movement. John Leary, who was charged with being a runaway, was later released to the custody of a family friend, a University of California professor. Eleven others were also released at Park Station after it was determined they were too old for school.

The elder Leary, in a phone call from New York, told the Chronicle that his son had been living in Berkeley for a month with his full approval. “This is the fourth time Jack’s been arrested — just for being his old man’s son.” As the other 21 admitted hippies were also released, Police Chief Thomas Cahill defended the raid. “I don’t have to make excuses to anybody,” Cahill declared. “If those who are criticizing had children who were swallowed up in that jungle, they’d have a different story.”

(San Francisco Chronicle Wayback Machine by Johnnie Miller)



  1. Eric Sunswheat October 9, 2017

    Redwood Valley and Potter Valley residents, mass evacuations in effect, due to wildfires.

    • Bruce Anderson October 9, 2017


      • james marmon October 9, 2017

        We’re on fire here in Clearlake too, people running onto docks to escape flames.

        Facebook Rumer, one fireman dead.

      • james marmon October 9, 2017

        My brother in Potter Valley says fire on west road and moving towards redwood valley, complete destruction.

      • mr. wendal October 9, 2017

        According to Kym Kemp and MendicinoVoice, there are 2 large fires. One in Redwood Valley @ 5,000 acres and and one in Potter Valley @ 1,500 acres. Structures have burned and two women have been badly injured and evacuations are in effect in both areas. Both are 0% contained. Hwys 101 and 20 were closed. I don’t know if they are open now. More details can be found at and and “@MendoSheriff” on twitter.

  2. George Hollister October 9, 2017

    Crazy. 35 degrees in Comptche this morning, fog, smoke and the presence of white and black ash in the air and on the surface.

  3. Bruce McEwen October 9, 2017

    Fire Bombers have been flying sorties since daybreak — the pilots, by law will max-out on flight-time, and the ground crews will soon be exhausted — damnit! — where’s that dashing Capt. Bedrock of the RAF just when you need him?

    Probably off having one of his Walter Mitty Moments…

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