Human Trafficking Saves Old Coast Café

Human trafficking does not depend on guns and muscles. Usually, it works by threats. Sylvia knew from the time she was a kid that she was an American citizen. Her father was born in the US. Even in the years when her American father and her Hispanic mother were living in Tijuana, they hung on […]

Fort Bragg Notes (Feb. 13, 2019)

The relatively new Fort Bragg City Attorney for our tiny metropolis is Russell Hildebrand of the formidable law firm Jones and Meyers. He now lives in Texas and does his work for the city by remote.  The location of Hildebrand’s new digs, I was informed somewhat reluctantly, is a suburb of Houston. City Hall declined […]

Court Ruling: Homeless Camp Alternative?

In the half-dozen homeless camps on the outskirts of Fort Bragg there were no fires on Christmas Eve. Any light might attract the attention of the cops. The raids come without warning, in intermittent unannounced assaults, cops and backhoes, teams of publicly-funded helping agencies, and batteries of dumpsters, all of it coordinated by the City […]

Consultant to Check Fort Bragg’s Tax Receipts

Mayor Lindy Peters and Councilman Will Lee are generally on the same page. The great love of Mayor Peters’ life is to wield convivial authority. This works well with Councilman Lee’s genetic instinct to enthusiastically endorse authority wherever it welcomes him. Mr. Lee has discovered a remunerative life calling as an apologist and booster for […]

Fort Bragg Winter Shelter DOA

The Fort Bragg City Council met Monday night November 26, in a sparsely attended hall. The usual suspects were back in their big padded seats grinning broadly. The quiet little city was tucked into bed watching on the internet. The few citizens in attendance came for the show whatever it was to be, and theater […]

Patterson Cashes In

City Of Fort Bragg Settles CVRA Claim — The City, the Coast Committee for Responsive Representation (Committee) and Jacob Patterson executed a Settlement Agreement late on October 10, 2018. The Committee rescinded its May 24th letter alleging a violation of the California Voting Rights Act of 2001 (CVRA); agreed to not file, assert or bring […]

The First Stonewall

On a fine Fort Bragg autumn morning, the very day of the Mendocino Coast District Hospital Board of Directors candidates forum at the senior center, I swung by the hospital to ask for the budget. I thought it would be simple. In my innocence, I assumed that the hospital would provide any candidate any information […]

The Big Week

This is a mighty week for politics in Fort Bragg. Bright and early Monday morning the conference room in City Hall was packed with officials. The City Attorney and Councilmen were leaning forward to wrestle with Jacob Patterson about the CVRA (California Voting Rights Act) lawsuit he’s holding over Fort Bragg’s head. Patterson looked like […]

The Cost Of Resistance

The City Council met in regular session Monday night and gloriously stole their own show, but there was more to it than met the eye.

Town Hall was packed, not the standing-room-only that often distinguishes our small, vibrant democracy, but there was a respectable turnout. In little Fort Bragg, a city of 7,000 residents, Council meetings are routinely attended by crowds far exceeding the who-cares-let-it-happen emptiness one ordinarily observes in the meetings of the County Board of Supervisors representing 80,000 constituents.

Miss Smith’s Finest Hour

The City Council meeting met Monday night in Fort Bragg’s Townhall was packed. I am always amazed at how much is revealed by intention or by omission at City Council meetings. Whatever they intend to do or try to hide, the focus of political pressures in the formality of democratic ritual tends strongly to strip […]