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 […]

CA’s Stringent New Pot Regs

Last week we discussed the new rules adopted by the State Water Resources Control Board (“State Water Board), establishing strict environmental standards for cannabis cultivation in order to protect water flows and water quality in California’s rivers and streams. The Water Board and other state agencies are planning on restricting or capping the number of […]

Measure B Wins Big

Most voters may have stayed at home but nevertheless Measure B, a one-half cent tax to improve abysmal mental health services in this county, won going away with 83 percent approving basically the same initiative that barely failed to garner the required two-thirds threshold a year ago. The final count stood at 11,609 in favor […]

Deregulation, PG&E, and the Fires

PG&E is now under investigation by state authorities trying to determine whether the electrical monopoly’s power lines played a role in igniting Northcoast wildfires that destroyed thousands of homes and killed 43 people. Both the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (CALFIRE) and the state’s Public Utilities Commission have launched investigations. Meanwhile, a group […]

Pot Pollution Of Water Sources

The Laytonville Water District regularly tests for nitrates in our water, and we have never tested positive for it.  That’s because here in the Long Valley area there has never been a history of the type of agriculture activity on the scale that’s practiced in other parts of the state.  However, it’s been reported that […]

Drinking Water Tax In The Works

There’s a bill in the state Senate that if approved would impose for the first time in California a tax on public drinking water for both homes and businesses. SB 623, sponsored by Sen. Bill Monning, D-Monterey, would generate $2 billion over 15 years allegedly for a Safe and Affordable Drinking Water Fund, which would […]

The Marketplace & Enforcement

It seems Mendocino County is unaware that state resource agencies are charged under state legislation legalizing marijuana to actually enforce state resource laws. These are basic laws that prevent environmental degradation on all lands, illegal water diversion and discharge, illegal or “moonscape” grading, illegal timber harvests, illegal use of pesticides and herbicides, etc. A month […]