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Mendocino County Today: Wednesday, Sep. 5, 2018

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THE MENDOCINO COMPLEX UPDATE: Containment on the Ranch Fire rose to 98% contained as of Tuesday morning, still at 410,000. The last section of uncontained fireline is west of Stonyford near Bonnie View and Happy Camp. Firefighters continue to monitor interior burning and patrol fire lines in this area.

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Contractors with additional heavy equipment arrived Sunday and are positioned along firelines to continue suppression repair. The suppression repair crews are repairing firelines by removing dirt berms, spreading cut vegetation and building water bars to reduce soil erosion.  Suppression repair is complete on the River Fire.

For detailed Mendocino Complex information visit:

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by Justine Frederiksen

Pacific Gas and Electric announced that it intends to begin the “marketing phase” this week of its potential sale of the Potter Valley Project, a hydroelectric plant that provides a relatively insignificant amount of electricity but an extremely significant amount of water to the Ukiiah Valley and many other communities along the Russian River.

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The Mendocino County Inland Water and Power Commission (MCIWPC), a Joint Powers Authority made up of representatives from the Mendocino County Water Agency, the City of Ukiah, the Potter Valley Irrigation District, the Redwood Valley County Water District and the Mendocino County Russian River Flood Control and Water Conservation Improvement District, officially announced its intention to enter the auction process for the facility.

“And while PG&E said they are interested in entertaining discussions they aren’t necessarily interested in delaying the process, and have slated the project to be auctioned,” Ukiah City Manager Sage Sangiacomo told the Ukiah City Council at it last meeting.

Mayor Kevin Doble sits on the board of the MCIWPC as the city representative, and said he had asked for the City Council to address the sale of the project, and to consider supporting the MCIWPC’s interest in the facility.

“Staff’s recommendation is to approve MCIWPC’s investigation for the possible acquisition of the project, including the necessary discovery and analysis needed for member agencies to evaluate the feasibility of participating in a potential acquisition,” said Sangiacomo, and the City Council approved the resolution unanimously.

“I do think this action is important and prudent, and it doesn’t commit you to participate in the purchase of the project, but supports MCIWPC acquiring the information to determine whether actual acquisition is a prudent move,” said Mendocino County 2nd District Supervisor John McCowen.

According to the MCIWPC, “our member agencies are dependent upon the water supply that is provided by the (Potter Valley Project’s) diversion into the East Branch of the Russian River. The agricultural economy of inland Mendocino County, the water supply for the communities of Potter Valley, Redwood Valley, Calpella, Ukiah, Talmage, Hopland, Cloverdale, Geyserville, Healdsburg and others along the Russian River, as well as water allocated to protect populations of listed species of fish under the Federal Endangered Species Act, are all reliant on water from the project.”

According to the Mendocino County Farm Bureau, PG&E announced that it “intends to start the marketing phase of the auction where anyone can request the marketing materials related to the project on Sept. 4.”

After that, interested parties wanting additional information will be required to sign a non-disclosure agreement with PG&E, then they can submit proposals for consideration.

PG&E will then evaluate and screen the proposals to determine the most viable candidates, then there will be a second round of non-disclosure requirements for additional information on the project.

The remaining candidates will then “submit a letter of intent and a more specific proposal with terms. This will narrow down the candidates to one or two parties that will then start a final negotiation phase with PG&E.”

The Farm Bureau noted that the auction process described above is expected to take “at least six months, and following the negotiation, an additional six-plus months is anticipated for the project transfer and regulatory approval process (Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, CA Public Utilities Commission, etc).

“Price will be part of the auction, but ultimately the ability to comply with the regulatory requirements and prove that the entity can operate and maintain the project and several other qualifications are considered.”

The Farm Bureau adds that “it is unknown at this time how many other entities, local or not, will participate in the marketing phase of the auction, or how many serious contenders will be chosen to move into the following phases. MCIWPC is willing to partner with other local entities as needed to secure local control of the project.”

(Courtesy, the Ukiah Daily Journal)

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Saturday, September 15th 3 pm

Join us for a reading with local author, Sarah Reith!  Sarah is the author of the brand-new novel A Schedule of Drugs in the Valley of Death.

Sarah Reith was born into a circus family in San Francisco, and ran away to join the army as soon as she turned 18. She was a parachute rigger at the jump school on Fort Benning, Georgia, where one of her incidental duties was “wind dummy,” or jumping out of an airplane ahead of a class of airborne students so the instructors could check the wind conditions. After concluding that life as a dummy lacked intellectual stimulation, she used her GI Bill to earn a BA in creative writing at Mills College for women. She worked as a bike messenger and a barista for some years before going back to school in Germany. She studied for her MA in German literature in the shadow of a medieval castle, burying her nose in little yellow volumes with very dense print and lots of umlauts. She is currently a reporter in Mendocino County, working on her second novel.

About the Book

“Isobel Reinhardt is a hot mess. The daughter of a wire-walker turned federal fugitive and a high-end sex worker who likes to call herself a feminist, Isobel has failed decisively at everything she’s put her hand to. So she comes to Mendocino County to grow pot for a woman who knows all her family secrets.

“When she narrowly escapes arrest while delivering pot for Alizarin, Isobel does a quick risk assessment and decides it’s time to get a legitimate job. Without a marketable skill set or a well-developed resume, she jumps at the opportunity to be one of two live-in caregivers for a dying German woman.

“As death and madness converge in a lonely country house at the end of a long dirt road, Isobel realizes the role of ferocity and beauty in her life.”

Light refreshments will be served. For more information – please contact Melissa at the Ukiah Library: 234-2862 or

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LITTLE DOG SAYS, “Some people! There were tons of ice cream people in Boonville on Labor Day, and can you believe two of them walked their dogs into our place where the dogs relieved themselves square in our driveway! Worse, the ice cream cones didn't clean up after their mutts either! I barked like a maniac, even foamed at the mouth like I had rabies, but they just walked on."

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On September 10, 2018 the Fort Bragg City Council will discuss Ordinance 941-2018 regarding Maintenance Standards for Vacant Commercial Buildings.  For further detail click here and scroll to item 7B.

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Running for Fort Bragg City Council! Don’t forget to VOTE in November

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SICK RIVER: Can These California Tribes Beat Heroin and History?

As salmon runs decline and opioid addiction grips the region, the Yurok, Karuk and Hoopa tribes see a connection between the river’s struggles and their own.

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ON THIS DAY in 1909 five sailors deserted the British tramp steamer Oswestry in Mendocino Bay. The five men escaped capture. It was thought the cause of the desertions was low wages and poor food quality.

The steamer was a steel steam ship built in 1905 by J.L. Thompson & Sons at Sunderland, England. It was a sister ship to the Eir, owned in 1905 by Imperial Steamship Co., Ltd. Her home port was Manchester, England. The ship measured 352 ft. in length, 50 ft. wide and 25 ft. deep.

The image was taken by Perley Maxwell c. 1909. (Click to enlarge)

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The package of bills pass prior to summer adjournment despite resistance from powerful insurance industry.

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CATCH OF THE DAY, September 4, 2018

Fox, Haas, Hernandez-Torres

JOSHUA FOX, Ukiah. DUI, misdemeanor hit&run with property damage, probation revocation.

BRENT HAAS, Ukiah. Under influence.


Hoaglin, Oneill, Vaughn

RICARDO HOAGLIN, Ukiah. Parole violation.

BENJAMIN ONEILL, Willits. Annoy/molest children under 18.

MOTECUHZOMA VAUGHN, Ukiah. Probation revocation.

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It seems to me that we are already in a Dark Age. As Nietzsche so accurately predicted, the 21st Century is a time of collapse in values. When values and norms are no longer operable in society, then relationships and behaviors break down and you are in an age of fierce struggle for meaning and purpose in life. That is dark, my friends, very dark. We pontificate on these electronic devices as if if actually means something, but it really doesn’t. The struggle is real and must, inevitably, take forms of violence and conflict until some other value system imposes itself. Nietzsche proposed that the ‘ubermensch’ would impose his rule because the weak would have to submit. If this is true, and I doubt it, then the strong man should soon appear and I doubt his name starts with T.

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THE CROOKS are always a step ahead: To remove “The Club” you cut through the steering wheel and slip off the club. Then you can use the club to break open the collar on the steering column and access the key tumbler – on older cars. The new fangled electronic key fobs are hard to defeat. For those vehicles you simply use a flatbed trailer and haul it away to a garage.

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HEALTH CARE ADVANCE DIRECTIVE WORKSHOP, Living with Dying Guild Thursday, Sept 13 with materials and instruction 2-4pm. Redwood Coast Senior Center. Free

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by Dave Zirin

On Sunday, shock waves went through the sports and marketing worlds when news broke that the quarterback blackballed by the NFL for kneeling during the anthem to protest police violence, Colin Kaepernick, would be the face of the 30th anniversary of Nike’s “Just Do It” ad campaign. The ad is an unairbrushed black-and-white close-up of Kaepernick’s face with the slogan “Believe in something even if it means sacrifice everything.”

Immediately, this sent social media into paroxysms of confusion. Liberals and left-wing commentators found themselves largely praising the brave decision by the global sneaker behemoth, promising to buy some Nike products to show support for the move. Others on the left stopped short of singing Nike’s praises but saw it as a victory for Kaepernick: He stood by his principles and now has a sweet shoe deal to show for it, which for many, further legitimizes his decision to protest.

On the right, there were calls for demonstrations against the sneaker company. #BoycottNike trended on Twitter. Scenes of people burning their sneakers or cutting the swooshes off of their clothes also went viral.

This is a head-spinning set of circumstances. Nike has been for decades a target of protests by student activists, with organizations like United Students Against Sweatshops on the front lines, for notoriously poor labor practices. Earlier this year, the company was accused of fostering a sexist work environment with chronic harassment. The opening line of a New York Times exposé was “For too many women, life inside Nike had turned toxic.” Then there is Nike boss Phil Knight, who gave $500,000 in 2017 to Oregon Republican gubernatorial candidate Knute Buehler.

When it comes to marketing, for three decades—from Spike Lee’s famous Air Jordan ads and John McEnroe’s “Rebel With a Cause” campaign to its current campaigns featuring LeBron James and Serena Williams—Nike has used the image of rebellion to sell its gear, while stripping that rebellion of all its content. As Gino Fisanotti, Nike’s vice president of brand for North America told ESPN, “We believe Colin is one of the most inspirational athletes of this generation, who has leveraged the power of sport to help move the world forward.” The idea that Nike executives would position themselves as messengers of Kaepernick’s righteous years-long struggle is, to put it mildly, galling.

In Nike’s antiseptic, hollow corporate-speak, Kaepernick is simply “moving the world forward.” There is no mention here of police violence or racism. And it would be stupid to expect it. This is Nike. Asking them to be a voice for social justice is like asking a dog to meow.

All of that being said, this is a case more complicated than just calling out Nike for commodifying dissent. Kaepernick has spent the last two years being showered with hatred and death threats, vilified on social media and from the presidential bully pulpit. In the last year, he has given away over a million dollars of his own money. He has been unable to earn a living during the prime years of his career. It is a great thing that he is actually going to earn an income and receive funding for his activist works.

It is satisfying that after two years in the political wilderness, he is getting an outpouring of support from those defending an ad with a message that reinforces the power of political sacrifice. Nike is the official sponsor of the NFL, so this ad campaign is a thumb in the eye of every owner who has colluded against him. Imagine the first time this ad plays during the commercial of an NFL game. Jerry Jones’s head might explode clean off his body. So good for Colin Kaepernick.

But global, multibillion-dollar corporations that run an archipelago of sweatshops don’t underwrite rebellions. They co-opt and quash them. If anyone can navigate this snakepit, it is Colin Kaepernick, but it won’t be easy. The revolution will not be branded. We should be honest about that. The message of standing up to police violence and racial inequity shouldn’t end up in a swoosh-laded graveyard. That’s the risk that comes with this sponsorship. But if anyone has earned the right to take that risk, it’s Colin Kaepernick.

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‘Do you do shotgun judicial confirmations?’

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Ingredients of salad to be laid down in layers in a big deep bowl, however much of each part you like. (All cold, direct from fridge.) Feel free to leave anything out entirely.

Loose, light, fresh, crisp iceberg lettuce cut in big chunks.

Spinach, or some other kind of lettuce besides iceberg.

Carrot, cut by sharpening it in the air like a carpenter's pencil. (But don't cut your thumb.)

Onion diced or cut in slivers.

Tiny multicolored tomatoes, whole.

Leftover bacon. (Kidding. There's no such thing as leftover bacon.)

Canned dark kidney beans. Canned garbanzo beans. With the bean juice or without.

Cauliflower florets.

Red bell pepper cut in strips.

Garlic, diced or minced.

Cayenne pepper, crunchy large-ground salt, dill weed.

Then olive oil, then vinegar.

Then whole pickled pepperoncini peppers.

(Don't mix it all up. Let eating it excavation-style mix it up.)

(Five minutes to make.)

(Or if you're in a hurry, or it's the middle of the night and you don't want to wake anybody up with all that opening and closing and chopping.)

Any kind of lettuce and/or spinach, torn or sliced, whatever.

Black canned olives or can of cheap tuna.

Cayenne pepper, salt, and/or dried granulated garlic or Mrs. Dash or Spike.

Oil, vinegar.

(One minute to make.)

(For huge hurry.)

Apple, or kosher dill pickle, whole. Just eat it on the way and wipe your hand on your pants.

(Marco McClean)

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I doubt if they'll stop Kavanaugh. The media like shows, and this will feed them for a few days--the DEBATE, the CONFLICT, ROE v WADE!!!!--all juicy, but I think the outcome is already written, and it's going to be Kavanaugh on the court. God, I hope I'm wrong, but I don't see how. It's a matter of indifferent numbers, and they appear to be wrong. Many of the horrors Trump has dumped on us can be undone, but Kavanaugh will probably be stinking up the land of opportunity long after Trump is gone.

On that front, the no-Trump front, his rejection by the courts, the congress, the media, the people and the world will be gripping and drawn out. Along with everybody, I'll be watching, but the main thing is to plan for what's next. Two years of Mike Pence will be like a two-year date with the worst person you can think of. I plan to turn him off. He'll be worse than Trump--every bit as monstrous but boring, too, and sanctimonious beyond endurance--but he'll be brief, like Gerry Ford.

Then they'll all be gone, these Republican figureheads, and we'll be in a what-now period. If the usual crowd remains mostly in place, the chance to reform, recalibrate, renew and rededicate American society will be squandered.

That's the likely scenario. Only if we the people rise to the occasion, get off our asses, burn some mental calories and keep on with the continued demolition of the rotten structures and in building of new, sound ones will we have a real refreshment of the Tree of Liberty.

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BLUE! (Repost with update/follow-up)

Dear AVA,

I had just completed this little essay on Janice Blue for a series I'm doing on North Beach poets, when your Off The Record arrived (at City Lights where I get my AVA weekly).While it's not a direct response to your wondering about her in your August 15 issue, it is, I guess you could say, a psychic response.

Janice Faye Duff is Blue's birth name. I don't think Marlene is/was Blue.

I hope you will at least print this in Letters to the Editor, though it would be great if you printed it in the AVA. Blue deserves it.

Thank you for the AVA. It saves my sanity.


My new book of poetry, Naked to the Earth, 348 pages, cloth, $24.95, is now available from Wild Ocean Press,

NEW: My Beard, Memoir Stories, (Spuyten Duvyil, 2018) Available on


I have an indelible picture in my mind of a poet dressed all in blue, head to foot, blue flowing long skirt and blue flying sleeves above her blue dyed hair, floating the early morning blue mist around the G Road lake on Albion Ridge. Floating in another world. It’s 1976 and I’m hosting the San Francisco-North Beach poets in readings at Pt. Arena and Mendocino, finding places for them to sleep. During the night in our cabin the poet Eugene Ruggles sleeping on the couch, gasped and screamed, suffering alcoholic delirium tremens. I’d heard of the D.T.s but had never witnessed it. I didn’t know what to do, his life seemed in danger.

In the morning my 15 year old son, Danny, disturbed by the convulsive screams that had kept him awake all night, was departing the door for the school bus coming down Albion Ridge, saw her cavorting in the meadow and gasped in dismay, “Poets! That one’s dressed all in blue!” Then, taking one last look at himself in the mirror, saw that he was dressed in red corduroys and a Mendocino Cardinal red jacket. Characteristic of his lasting honesty, he gasped, “and I’m dressed all in red!” I don’t remember Janice Blue’s poetry that night but I well remember my son’s bafflement. “Poets!”

Thirty-three years later, in 2009, I nominated and won for her the PenOakland Josephine Miles Poetry Award. Her book was of beautiful and profound poetry. I don’t think I knew then that she had spent the previous 11 years in prison for killing a well-known North Beach union activist.

Or, maybe I did know.

She told me from the passenger seat of my Valentine van, as we were driving from the Awards ceremony through San Francisco to the Lombard Street bus stop for the 5 hour trip back to Fort Bragg, of those 11 years, what she was in for. Three friends were drinking in one of the three’s North Beach apartment. He, a Union or Something leader/activist, began beating her, his lover. Blue managed to stop him. But in the doorway he turned on his woman again, started beating her again, cursing that he was going to kill her. Blue grabbed the gun the girlfriend kept to fight off the inevitable next beating and after another powerful slug, knocking her to the floor again, shot him. Blue was arrested. The enlightened North Beach community of poets and political activists, in shock, loss and endemic sexism, was enraged that a woman had defended her abused sister of the common practice of wife-beating. When the woman that Blue had defended, typical of abused women, testified in the trial against her on his behalf, Blue was found guilty of murder.

Blue spent all or most of her 11 years of imprisonment in the Chino facility. And wrote magnificent poetry. Maybe she’d always been a magnificent poet, certainly she identified as a poet, floats still in my G Road lake.

Blue was from rural Kentucky, from a violent childhood, but she maintained a love and loyalty to the place. She was a hillbilly, she laughed. We shared Southern roots. The startling, rhythmic, complex language her poems are rooted in poured forth in breathtaking meaning and beauty.

After prison she settled on the Mendocino coast in Fort Bragg. “I can never go back to North Beach,” she sighed in sorrow, homesickness, her poet’s heart and spirit. “I’ll be killed.”

There are two wonderful photos of us at the Pen Oakland awards ceremony. She continued to write extraordinary poems. Extraordinary partly due, for me, to the Southern language root we share—not the stereotypical “accent” mimicked to this day by prejudiced Northern “carpetbaggers.” Janice Blue managed to get intellectual, political and social, symbolic, music-rooted depth onto paper.

On the night she died, Nov 7, 2017, the poet ruth weis, living now on G Road, Albion, called me. Blue had asked her to.

When I moved into my love’s North Beach apartment here in Bob Kaufman Alley I found the 26-by-14 inch lithograph of Kaufman by Kristen Wetterhahn that she gave me at his death in 1986, and also the chapbook Closing Time Till Dawn by Kaufman and Janice Blue with the Wetterhahn replica on the cover. I knew that the long silent poet Kaufman had lived in this apartment complex a half block up from the original City Lights Bookstore on Grant. He’s been on all my rare walls since. Now I’m living in his Alley.

I see Janice Blue and Bob Kaufman and Eugene Ruggles still walking these North Beach streets, maybe drunk, but giant characters, great poets. Great accomplishments in this stupid, fowl-mouthed, evil country that tortured them. Tortures all of us.

Sharon Doubiago

September 3, 2018

San Francisco

My Introduction of Janice Blue for Pen Oakland’s Josephine Miles Poetry Award, 2009

Janice Blue was a poet as a child in country towns of the 40s and 50s in extreme western Kentucky. She was a Bible scholar of her Daddy’s King James,’ and she got poetry too from her mother’s lap in her rocking chair—Stephen Foster’s. She went to St. Louis High School mid to late 50s, danced to Chuck Berry and studied the Appalachian poet, Jesse Stuart. After high school she worked as a secretary and cocktail waitress, and hung out with espresso coffee house folk singers and Bohemians in Gas Light Square. She researched folk music, folk verse, and folktales of all lands. She came to North Beach, singing and playing guitar and autoharp at The Coffee and Confusion on upper Grant, the Shiloh on Fillmore, the Drinking Gourd on Union Street. She began to follow Jazz People. She married two of them. In 1969 she had her poet epiphany, which included her name, Blue, and her clothing ever since. She became the organizer, moderator and fighter for open mic poetry in North Beach. She did The Coffee Gallery on upper Grant first, and then Peta’s on Columbus, The Spoken Spoon series, as she cooked and served and gave away 200 bowls of Cajun food every Sunday there. She fought with the Arts Council for full color posters and flyers. In the 80’s, she achieved land for writers and artists in both the Ozarks of Arkansas and Humboldt County of Northern California. In Eureka Springs she ran a weekly community poetry hour on the radio station KESP. The poet Paul Landry was her partner for nine years, they lived and studied in Japan for a year. She is the first woman to get a dispatch slip from The Inland Boatmen’s Union of the Pacific as an Ordinary Seaman. In significant ways she was close with Bob Kaufman, Jack Micheline, Wayne Miller, and Eugene Ruggles, as the famous posters show. Her books are In Good Old No-Man’s Land, Closing Time Till Dawn, with Bob Kaufman, Footsteps in the Empty, and now Will Have Been.

Sharon Doubiago

My blurb for her Beatitude Press book:

Kentucky is a Cherokee word for “magic.” This hillbilly girl, this cosmic, comic, trippy philosopher, “lovely Elizabethan” linguist, so sweet, ornery and sad, conjures pure magic. She’s so good you want to die behind her words. Deep poet! (She wears only blue). Hooray for Will Have Been, whose mama warned her long ago. Quirky, original, fantastic play of language. Awesome delight. “Thoughts on Thought and Being’s House.” Oh man, is she hip. Beautiful. And now a Mendocino intellectual.


re: BLUE!

Nice essay.

A correction. Her birth name was Janice Faye Adams and she was married to William Duff, taking his name.

The story of the murder of Willie Dyble, while he was in his bed where he was found, had more versions. One includes the attempted murder of Ruth but there were no more bullets left after she emptied the gun on Willie. We’ll never know how it really happened. Alcohol is a mighty powerful substance.

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  1. james marmon September 5, 2018


    BENJAMIN ONEILL is in deep doo-doo if Chief Deputy DA Dale Trigg handles his case.

  2. james marmon September 5, 2018


    I found it ironic that the AVA Staff posted those two stories together. Speaking with her a number of times I’ve found Sarah to be a nice person but she’s as liberal as a liberal can be. Her book should sell well in Mental-cino County and up and down the entire left coast.

    AVA News Service, June 13, 2018

    “KZYX REPORTER SARAH REITH appeared before the Board of Supervisors Tuesday to complain about the County and the City of Ukiah’s treatment of homeless people with shopping carts.”

    “I’m currently working on a series of interviews with homeless people mostly in Ukiah. So this is a Ukiah issue but it is tied in with county policy because of the consultant who was recently hired, Dr. Robert Marbut. One of his recommendations was to get strict about shopping carts. The city of Ukiah recently passed an ordinance that homeless people pushing shopping carts would be subject to citations starting August 1. But I have been speaking with a lot of homeless people and advocates and the police department and they are issuing citations now, which has resulted in I would say a loss of trust if there were trust to be lost…”

    Ukiah OKs revised ordinance aimed at stolen shopping carts

    POSTED: 03/23/18,

    The Ukiah [Mo Town] City Council Wednesday approved a revised version of an ordinance regulating misuse of shopping carts, which are private property and provided by businesses for temporary use by their customers.

    “McCowen explained that Marbut advises communities to have “zero-tolerance” for homeless encampments because they pose serious health and safety risks to all residents, and that shopping carts should be viewed as “encampments on wheels” which serve to spread disease and other risks even more than non-mobile ones.”

  3. Harvey Reading September 5, 2018

    Was there a major league baseball season this year?

    • George Hollister September 5, 2018

      Yes, but the Giants were only able to field a minor league team.

  4. Dave Smith September 5, 2018

    RICO Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act

    Trump (Mango Mussolini) and family are going to jail, convicted under the RICO Act. Thus they will forfeit all their ill-gotten properties and laundered fortune. You can look it up. The top Republican leadership including Pence will also serve time under the Act. Their recent realization of vulnerability has resulted in everyone falling in line knowing they will either stand together or fall together. Nancy Pelosi will become President as the Democrats will have taken back the House in the election and she is next in line. Will Pelosi appoint Hillary as VP or instead go to one of the young up-and-coming Socialist stars of the party? Will they then impeach the two new Supreme Court Justices? That is all you have to worry your pretty little heads about.

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