Wildfires & The Insurance Problem

As I write this the death count in the Butte County Camp Fire stands at 64 but is climbing. Just 24 hours after the conflagration started, heavy smoke had already drifted to the North Coast and Bay Area. After its fourth day it was declared to be the most destructive in state history. In a […]

No Hurry On New Pot Rules

I’ve said this before but it needs to be said again, it’s never a good idea for elected officials to pick a fight with folks they shouldn’t really be picking fights with. But that’s exactly what happened this week at a public meeting held in Willits by the Board of Supervisors’ Cannabis Ad Hoc Committee. […]

Hand & Glove Must Fit

Appears I somewhat influenced the county into somewhat enforcing its cannabis ordinance. At the Sept 11 BOS meeting, Planning and Building Dept. staff delivered a report on enforcement. Highlights from the report noted that: • 50 percent of all complaints P&B received are for cannabis-related activities. • 223 cannabis complaints to-date from 177 locations. • […]

PG&E Bailout: You’re Going To Be Paying For It

It was almost too easy. The precision-like fleecing of the People of the State of California, that is. As predicted here late last year, when the Northcoast fires were still smoldering, I said there would be a historically epic showdown between the Big Three (PG&E and the other two electrical monopolies, Southern California Edison and […]

Air Tax Next?

As we discussed here several weeks ago, I said I’d be keeping both eyes open in the event the on again-off again, on again-off again proposal to tax public drinking water was resurrected in the closing days of the current legislative year that occurs on August 31.

A Tale of Two Counties

There’s an educational study in contrasts between two-thirds of the Emerald Triangle when looking at their respective cannabis ordinances and the policies and actions relative to enforcement. The counties of Humboldt and Mendocino stand in stark contrast to one another in their approaches and implementation of their respective ordinances legalizing marijuana. Humboldt County clearly had […]

Drowning In Regs

Last week’s column discussed marijuana legalization and some of the adverse consequences, especially economic consequences, it’s having on local communities such as Laytonville. I argued that there are one too many sets of regulations with the state and local governments each issuing their own regulatory frameworks. I said, “One must be eliminated. And there’s really […]

How To Fix The Vote Counting Problem

You’re probably asking yourself, how long does it take to count votes in Mendocino County? The answer is: Longer, much longer than it should ever take in a county with only 90,000 people. I liken this situation to the old saying about justice. “Justice delayed is justice denied.” Obviously the voters deserve better treatment, not […]

Third District Needs Pinches

By the way, for any new readers out there, I’ll disclose the Shields and Pinches families have been friends for about 30 years now. John’s dad, Sully, recently deceased, lived next to me out in the country. John’s brother and sister-in-law, Jimmy and Rhonda, live across the street from my daughter and son-in-law. And his sister, June Sizemore, is another long-time friend and much-loved member of the family.

Finding Bad Ideas

One of the first things I learned as an elected official many years ago was that citizen-voters have very modest expectations of officeholders and the bureaucrats who carry out their decisions. That’s certainly the case here in Mendocino County. For example, most folks are content if there is adequate police and fire protection, potholes are […]

Warning Flags On Several Fronts

Following up on last week’s column regarding the state Department of Water Resources’ (DWR) February dismal snowpack reading of a paltry 25 percent of the historical average, you can bet state officials are prepping Alternative Plan D — as in Drought regulations. While water planners are for the moment keeping their powder as dry as […]