Mendocino County Today: November 16, 2013

by AVA News Service, November 15, 2013

BOONVILLE! MENDOCINO COUNTY'S MOST HAPPENING COMMUNITY!

Saturday - Boonville Winter Market - in front of Boonville General Store - 11:00-1:00 - rain or shine

• Yorkville Olive Ranch - olive oil

• WildeAcre Farm - sauerkraut, pickles, chia seed muffins, dried asian pears and more

• AV Community Farm - greens, sweet potatoes, potatoes, onions, radishes, cilantro, dill, turnips, rutabaga, usda lamb and goat - next week chicken

• Diane Paget - Back Yard Jam and Jelly, Rye Muffins, Crocheted Hats, Whirly-Gigs, Bring Your Own Dish Kits and other craft items

• and more!

Sunday - Fermentation Fest - To refresh your memories, below is the original info that was sent out . It would be fun to have music while we are working, so please bring your favorite CD or an instrument if you would like to entertain us a bit.

Also, please feel free to come just for the Potluck (info below.)

Fermentation Fest

Fermentation is a skill used around the world for preserving food. It is basically the transformation of food by various bacteria, fungi and enzymes they produce into a healthful form that renders the food more digestible and full of healthful benefits.

On Sunday November 17, the Anderson Valley Foodshed Group is hosting a Fermentation Party. This is a perfect time of year to think about fermentation because it is a good way to preserve many vegetables that are in abundance at this time. If you are already making sauerkraut, kimchee, or any of the various other fermented vegetables, please come with your expertise to share. If you have never fermented, then be prepared to learn a skill that will greatly benefit you and your family.

We will begin Fermenting at about 3:00. If you would like to go home from the event with a jar of fermenting kraut, please bring a wide-mouth pint jar with lid and some vegetables from your garden or organic vegetables from the store. Any vegetable can be chopped up and fermented. It’s a good way to use up the last of the produce from your summer garden. Tomatoes don't do well. Bring what you have. We'll be doing lots of chopping and slicing. Bring your own knife if you'd like. Herbs and spices for flavoring are nice, too.

We will also be Celebrating Abundance, so, if you have too much of anything in your garden or orchard, please bring it to share. You might go home with someone else's abundance. The produce that isn’t snatched up will go to the AV Food Bank. Or you can designate your food especially for the Food Bank.

The Apple Press will be there if you have apples you would like to press into juice.

When we are finished preparing the ferment (about six), we will all share another delicious Anderson Valley Local Food Potluck. Fermenters are asked to bring krauts for tasting. Also, don't forget to BYO (bring your own dishes) and a serving utensil for your potluck dish.

You will also have the opportunity to learn about how you can connect with AV Foodshed Group projects. We have lots of dreams for our local foodshed. We hope you will want to be more involved with making Our Local Food Dreams Come True.

We will also be having a drawing for a $100 gift certificate to Aquarelle Café and Wine Bar, which was donated by Petit Teton Farm.

See you at the AV Solar Grange in Philo on Sunday November 17.

3:00ish for Fermentation

6:00ish for the Local Food Potluck.

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THE REST OF THE KOZUSYN STORY

Editor:

Regarding your story regarding my mother and brother Nov 10. I read the story about my mother and brother, Ruth and Kevin Kozusyn, with great interest, I hadn't known the event was publicized until someone brought it to my attention. Thank you for the article. You got a number of facts and interpretations correct but I wanted to clarify a few things, in the event it matters to you.

First, my mother is technically elderly but takes care of herself on her wilderness property, where she unequivocally wants to be, a lifestyle choice that involves her being educated about such things as generators, water pumps, batteries, septic systems, etc. Your article somehow portrays her as some unfortunate ancient thing, but she is in fact fully independent with great vitality and clarity of thinking. She's an intellectual, so I'm sure if she's seen your article, she's not remotely amused about being repeatedly referred to as “tough old bird,” “old lady,” “poor old Ruth,” “the old lady.” No woman, no matter what her age, ever, ever wants to be called “a tough old bird.” How insensitive of the writer. I don't know how old the writer is but he/she clearly does not understand that even as people age they don't regard themselves as old. I have respect for people who have awareness of this.

Also, my brother lives on my mother's property, not she with him. It is large acreage and has a small but beautiful permitted new house that my brother built her — by himself — since his expertise is architecture, engineering and construction. The cottage that Kevin built is so charming, classic and well-done, it should be published. Also, my mother has income from several sources, including benefits from my father, a deceased retired military officer. So therefore, although she lives frugally, luckily for her, she is not living in “conditions inimical to her well-being” as mentioned in your article.

Thank you for the opportunity for me to share my thoughts with you regarding this unfortunate chapter for my family.

— Stacy Kozusyn, Portland

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IN JUDGE BRENNAN’S COURTROOM

by Malcolm Macdonald

When Fort Bragg Police Chief Scott Mayberry comes to the Ten Mile Court and stays for over an hour and his name isn’t on any witness or subpoena list, then something is up. When Judge Clayton Brennan speaks to defense attorney Mark Kalina in open court mentioning “the articles by Malcolm Macdonald,” you can’t help but take notice.

Such were circumstances at the Ten Mile courthouse, Wednesday morning, November 6, 2013. The case: The State of California v. Karen and John Brittingham. The Brittinghams were arrested on November 23, 2012 out­side the Company Store in Fort Bragg, and charged with a felony violation of California’s Penal Code 69. The key phrase in Penal Code 69 is: “Every person who attempts, by means of any threat or violence, to deter or prevent an executive officer from performing any duty…” This can be read to mean that the Brittinghams got into some sort of physical altercation with one or more Fort Bragg Police officers.

In court, two Fort Bragg police officers were seated immediately behind Assistant District Attorney Tim Stoen: Sgt. Brandon Lee and Officer Jonathan McLaughlin, whose name is on the booking log for this case. But there was another officer at the scene, whose name was barely mumbled by Stoen when he began the day’s proceedings, but the officer’s name was pronounced clearly and repetitively by Kalina. That third officer, not present in court, is none other than Craig Guydan, who has been on the force since May of 2012, and has already been the subject of numerous articles in the AVA (see March 6, 13, and 20, June 19, and October 9 issues). Briefly: Guydan was the only Fort Bragg Police officer to discharge his gun while on duty in 2012. That December 21, 2012 shooting of a dog occurred after ten seconds of barking outside a Walnut Street house. The event became the subject of one Fort Bragg citizen’s formal complaint against Guydan. Coast Copwatch (of which I am a member) filed another formal complaint against Guydan based on the dog shooting as well as a January 7, 2013 incident in which Guydan drew his gun while pursuing what turned out to be a group of youths playing football by streetlight, and several other incidents in which Guydan falsely accused coastal citizens and business owners of a variety of crimes.

The November 6 Ten Mile Court proceedings last week were scheduled as a preliminary hearing in the State v. Karen and John Brittingham case, but that was put off until late January, 2014. What ensued on the first Wednesday in November were arguments over Stoen’s motion to quash Kalina’s subpoena directed at Fort Bragg City Manager Linda Ruffing.

Astute readers will remember that Ruffing was also a subject of the October 9 AVA article regarding the investigation into Guydan’s actions. More background: The investigation was conducted by Chuck Lebak, who served on the Redding, CA, police force at roughly the same time as current Fort Bragg Police Chief Scott Mayberry. That conflict of interest aside, Lebak failed to interview three key, first-hand, witnesses to Guydan’s wrongful actions. During his investigation, Lebak went out of his way to verbally denigrate two other Fort Bragg Police officers to local citizens; two officers who had virtually no connection to Guydan’s actions. The October 9 AVA piece detailed how another member of Coast Copwatch and myself met with Ruffing in August about the woeful nature of Lebak’s investigation. At the end of the hour-long meeting, Ruffing promised to look into the matter herself. Her response time was not quick. After two months and many unanswered messages went by, Ruffing finally responded with an email on October 16 that said: “The Police Department has a process for investigating complaints and the details of internal investigations are confidential personnel records. While I cannot divulge any information regarding internal investigations, I can assure you that Chief Mayberry has established high standards of conduct for our police officers. The command staff at the Police Department work very hard to train our less experienced officers and to help them develop the ‘soft skills’ that are necessary in community-oriented policing. Since Chief Mayberry took the helm at the Police Department, we have hired six new police officers. From my vantage point, each and every one of these officers is an asset to the Department and to our community.”

Ruffing also responded, kinda-sorta, to Coast Copwatch’s questions about investigator Lebak: “In the course of our conversation, you expressed concerns about Chuck Lebak, an independent investigator who has performed services for the Fort Bragg Police Department. The concerns were about Mr. Lebak’s independence given that he worked for many years at the Redding Police Department, as did Chief Mayberry. You also ex­pressed concerns about specific comments that Mr. Lebak made while interviewing you. I have passed these concerns along to Chief Mayberry. The Chief and I believe it is a good management practice to rotate investigators and, should additional internal investigations be needed in the future, other investigators will be called upon.”

Though Ruffing acknowledged that Lebak needs to be replaced as an investigator, she failed to mention anything about the next logical conclusion: that Lebak’s investigation into Guydan’s actions needs to be performed anew with a truly independent investigator or investigators.

In response to Coast Copwatch’s call for a Citizen’s Oversight Committee, Ruffing offered the same old same old: “The City Council has a ‘Public Safety Committee’ comprised of two Councilmembers. The Committee meets monthly and provides a forum for community input into Police Department activities. I would encourage folks who want a greater voice regarding public safety matters to attend the Public Safety Committee meetings or to communicate directly with Councilmem­bers Deitz and Kraut, as well as Chief Mayberry and me.”

Ms. Ruffing must think that Coast Copwatch members are all afflicted with some sort of short-term mem­ory loss. Coast Copwatch members have attended the Public Safety Committee meetings and City Council meetings, calling for citizen oversight boards, commit­tees, and/or panels at both — with no response whatso­ever from City Council members, the Police Chief, or the City Manager, not even to bring up the matter and vote it down.

The last sentence of City Manager Ruffing’s Oct. 16 response to Coast Copwatch — “I would encourage folks who want a greater voice regarding public safety matters to attend the Public Safety Committee meetings or to communicate directly with Councilmembers Deitz and Kraut, as well as Chief Mayberry and me” — is telling and it will bring us back to the Brittingham case and their attorney, Mark Kalina. By the time of Copwatch’s August meeting, Ruffing was aware of some of the citizens who investigator Lebak failed to contact concerning Officer Guydan’s wrongful actions. These citizens may have also talked to Mayor Dave Turner. Keep in mind other citizens have called and emailed Chief Mayberry about Guydan’s misdeeds, but the catch is that only two written complaints were ever formally lodged. Thus only two exist in Guydan’s personnel records. The further catch is that the only “investigation” conducted about Guydan was the entirely inappropriate, unprofessional one done by Chuck Lebak.

The Brittinghams’ attorney, Mark Kalina, included Linda Ruffing on a list of subpoenaed witnesses. Assis­tant District Attorney Stoen presented a motion to quash such a subpoena stating that Ruffing’s testimony about citizen complaints would only amount to hearsay, adding that other complaints against Guydan did not involve the physical confrontation that occurred in the Brittingham case. Kalina cited the dog shooting as evidence of Guydan’s overly aggressive policing methods. Stoen called Kalina’s subpoena of Ruffing “a fishing expedition.”

Judge Brennan sided with Stoen, quashing Kalina’s subpoena of Ruffing, but he did leave the door open for Kalina to file a Pitchess Motion.

What is a Pitchess Motion, you ask? Peter Pitchess was the Sheriff of Los Angeles County in the 1970s. The California Supreme Court case that derives from his name established the right of a defendant to access a law enforcement officer’s personnel records when the defendant alleges that the officer used excessive force and/or lied about the events that led to the defendant’s arrest. Of course, a law enforcement officer, like any employee, has the right to assume his/her personnel files will remain private. Therefore, a defendant must write and sign an affidavit that details specific facts establishing a plausible foundation for an allegation of officer misconduct.

Whether Kalina can establish a compelling enough link between the Brittinghams’ seemingly violent confrontation with Officer Guydan and the complaints of citizens passed along to City Manager Ruffing remains to be seen. What Kalina’s legal maneuvering makes clear is that Ruffing, the so-called Public Safety Committee, with two City Council members, and Police Chief Mayberry have inadvertently, or not, created something of a shell game for anyone questioning the authority of the Fort Bragg Police Department. If you complain about police misconduct to a council member or the city manager, the Police Department can say, “You didn’t com­plain formally.” If you complain formally, another complainant won’t know about your complaint unless you hire a lawyer and file a successful Pitchess Motion.

Another difficulty in getting to the bottom of police officer misconduct is the fear factor. Some of the Fort Bragg citizens contacted by Coast Copwatch are in a similar boat with the people who sent Copwatch this email message earlier this year: “While we would be happy to sign a petition or otherwise be part of a united citizen's complaint about Guydan such as what you have been organizing, we are a bit reluctant to be singled out as the point people attacking him because once that fact became known in the police department, it could make it very uncomfortable for us… [driving] around town in a very distinctive [business] car that could become an easy magnet for extra police attention.”

Whether the Brittinghams are guilty or not, what their case demonstrates is that Officer Guydan’s misdeeds may still come home to roost, not just for him, but for the leadership of the Fort Bragg Police Department and the city government that has done everything it can to ignore and cover-up not only his misdeeds, but their own preposterous investigation.

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A READER COMMENTS on the huge labor violations at the two North State Ukiah restaurants (Café Walter and Ruen Tong): “And whether or not the victims were documented, immigrant populations in general are much more vulnerable to this type of crime. I knew a kid who worked full time for three weeks for no pay as a ‘trainee’ dishwasher at a local coffee shop. When I found out I managed to convince him that he was being taken and that he would be an unpaid ‘trainee’ for as long as he kept showing up and doing the work. He confronted the owner and asked him if that was true and the owner admitted to him that he had no intention of hiring him. Another guy who was actually being paid to work there got picked up by la migra right at the end of his two week pay period. He managed to convince the agents to take him by the restaurant so he could pick up his check. Of course, the owner said he had never seen the guy in his life. But it sounds like the perps in this case missed their calling — they should at least be in the state legislature if not congress. Or in healthcare.”

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ROUTE 128 (19.5/22.0) – PG&E of Eureka has been issued a Caltrans Encroachment permit for tree trimming from 0.5 mile east of Monte Bloyd Road to 0.6 mile west of Philo beginning Monday, November 18. Work hours are 7AM to 4PM, weekdays. One-way traffic control will be in effect. Motorists should anticipate 5-minute delays. LC#P128EA

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Wetzler

Wetzler

ON NOVEMBER 11, 2013 at about 3pm a subject went to the Mendocino Coast Water Works on Wheeler Street in Mendoicno to pay for services rendered. At that location the subject was contacted by Amica Wetzler, 33, of Mendoicno, who represented herself as an employee of Mendocino Coast Water Works. Wetzler obtained $2,700 from the subject and provided him with a handwritten receipt. The next day an actual employee of Mendocino Coast Water Works contacted the subject regarding the outstanding bill. The subject explained that he had paid the bill, and had a receipt. The employee called the Mendocino County Sheriff's Office and reported the theft.  Investigations by Mendocino County Sheriff's Deputies identified the suspect as Amica Wetzler. Wetzler was subsequently arrested for violations of 487(A) PC and 532 PC and the majority of the stolen money was recovered. Wetzler was lodged at the Mendocino County Jail where she was to be held in lieu of $15,000 bail. (Sheriff’s Department Press Release)

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EXCUSE ME for not being shocked that jocks, role models for our nation's youth, do and say things in the locker room, and among themselves, that the Appropriate Police would not approve. Thing is, men generally, except Mendo men active in the Democrat Party, routinely do and say things unlikely to earn them guests spots on Women's Voices. Wait here while I change into garrulous old codger.

AT CAL POLY, BK (Before Krukow) circa 1961-62, jocks lived in World War Two barracks near the baseball field. The college also housed foreign students with the jocks, a policy that undoubtedly contributed significantly to anti-American feeling in their homelands when they returned to Iran, Haiti, and Taiwan. There were many nights of rough nighttime merriment in this branch of student housing, strategically located far from the regular student accommodations. It was almost as if admin had decided, “A lot of these so-called athletes are older and, ah, rougher, than most of our youngsters so it might be a good idea to isolate them. The furriners? Who cares?”

AMERICA may have been a rich country by 1960, but I don't remember any of us having any money, and we had to foot it back and forth into town, meaning we were on our own for entertainment. Which meant lots of felony-quality behavior that would have gotten the perps expelled if they'd been caught. But the ethic was prison-like: no snitching. And as athletes, we always got the benefit of the doubt, if not free passes to do whatever we wanted.

THESE DORMS were so outtahand that the night watchman refused to stop patrolling that part of the campus after he was mugged one night, stripped naked and left tied up in the street. We all chuckled about that one for weeks. There was an investigation that of course went nowhere.

FRED WITTINGHAM was a regular visitor. A linebacker at Cal Poly, he went on to play and then coach in the NFL. As a player, he was known as “Mad Dog,” which gives you an idea of his temperament. He was already married when he played at Cal Poly so he lived off-campus. But still being a kid, he'd hang out at night with all his teammates in the jock palace. I wrote his classroom papers for him. I voluntarily read books, a practice that was alternately regarded by my roommates as odd and/or suspicious.

Wittingham: Player, Coach, Retired, Just prior to his death in 2003

Wittingham: Player, Coach, Retired, Just prior to his death in 2003

“YOU KNOW what I need,” Mad Dog would jauntily direct me like he was ordering a sandwich, “make it the usual. All I need is a C.” The trick was not to make the paper too good because they'd know MD didn't write it. I'd knock out a C paper for him, Mad Dog would give me a few bucks and a couple of jolly attaboys.

ONE NIGHT, Mad Dog got into a fight with a running back named Jim Fahey. Fahey thought he looked scholarly as hell by walking around with a pencil behind his ear. The fight went on for too many long minutes until Fahey finally got his teeth clamped on to one one of Mad Dog's ears and bit off his ear lobe. There was already blood everywhere, and even the rest of us psychos, who approved of violence as the most efficacious problem-solving strategy, thought it had gone too far.

WITTINGHAM made a good life for himself in football, and I see his son a lot on ESPN. I remember Mad Dog Jr. as a toddler. When Little Mad Dog stumbled and fell one day, I remember Mad Dog not allowing the child to cry. Fred Jr. went on to be a big time football player and is now a college coach. Incognito would have been right at home in San Luis Obispo, 1962. He fits in lots of places. This is America, after all.

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HUMBOLDT CO. DISTRICT ATTORNEY PRESS RELEASE:

On Wednesday, November 13, 2013, two Humboldt County residents entered felony and misdemeanor pleas for violating the Clean Water Act, thus resolving a significant case of illegal mining of sensitive wetlands in the Bridgeville area off of Highway 36.

As alleged in the civil complaint filed in this matter, the violations concern large-scale industrial surface mining of peat from wetlands in the Bridgeville area, which was later sold for profit. The mining occurred over a period of more than a decade. The People alleged that Daniel Wojcik had no permits to mine the wetland for peat, nor did he have permits to sell it, although he knew that such permits were required.

The wetlands at issue are peat fens. Peat develops slowly, over thousands of years, and inland peat habitat is quite rare in California. The few neighboring fens that exist were found to contain rare plants, but it is not known whether the peat fens that were mined contained such plants. The largest wetland that Mr. Wojcik mined was over eleven acres, and allegedly he did so with the consent of the landowner, Robert Wotherspoon, through a business relationship. The bulk of the mining occurred after 2000, though some apparently occurred prior to that.

The Department of Fish & Wildlife (DFW) conducted an investigation after a scientist there, Michael van Hattem, used aerial photography to notice the large-scale mining operation, and inquired as to whether it was duly permitted. It was not. Extensive investigation by DFW wardens Ed Ramos and Shane Embry and North Coast Regional Water Quality Control Board environmental scientist Stormer Feiler, in coordination with CalFIRE and the Humboldt County Department of Planning, eventually led to the submission of a case for prosecution to the Humboldt County District Attorney’s Office.

District Attorney Paul Gallegos recognized that the case was serious and merited attention from his office, but was also cognizant of the limits of his office to prosecute such a complex case in light of recent staffing shortages. To fill this gap in prosecution resources, Mr. Gallegos referred the case to the Circuit Prosecutor Project at the California District Attorneys Association in Sacramento.

The Circuit Prosecutor Project began in 1998 to facilitate the prosecution of complex environmental cases in rural Northern California, since these sort of cases are unlike other cases handled by prosecutors and because even in 1998, such rural offices often lacked resources to adequately prosecute environmental crimes that happened in their jurisdictions. Although the resources issue in rural Northern California has continued to worsen since 1998, unfortunately, the Project has also shrunk, likewise due to budget issues, to the point where there is just one Circuit Prosecutor: Matthew Carr. Mr. Carr currently covers 16 of California’s 58 counties.

Mr. Carr was invited to review the case for prosecution and felt that it easily merited a criminal filing due to the gravity of the violations and his assessment that the violations were willful. In February of 2011, Mr. Carr filed a five-count felony complaint against Mssrs. Wojcik and Wotherspoon, alleging a conspiracy to violate the Surface Mining and Recovery Act (SMARA) and the Lake and Streambed Alteration permitting process, along with four violations of the Clean Water Act. The fifth count concerned Mr. Wojcik only, relating to his failure to secure a business license for his peat sales. Mr. Carr also filed a civil complaint, alleging a wider range of violations against a wider range of defendants, including violations of CEQA, the county Streamside Management Area ordinance, and zoning laws.

Mssrs. Wojcik and Wotherspoon cooperated in the settlement of this matter, and the District Attorney’s Office appreciates the defendants’ work in crafting a settlement agreement that duly penalizes them such that they do not profit from their illegal actions and in fact lose money on them, but also ensures that the wetlands are restored as well as possible, and that in some ways, the habitat of the area is improved.

Yesterday, November 13, 2013, Messrs. Wojcik and Wotherspoon entered felony and misdemeanor pleas, respectively, with regard to violations of section 404 of the Clean Water Act, pursuant to a complex plea agreement. Mr. Wojcik will pay a penalty of $189,222; Mr. Wotherspoon will pay a penalty of $130,804 and will donate to the state permanent access to the violation site for monitoring the restoration and as a “living laboratory” for scientists to access to study this sort of rare ecosystem and its hoped-for regeneration.

Mr. Wojcik will also serve 500 hours of community service, while Mr. Wotherspoon will serve 100 hours.

Mr. Wojcik will also address various zoning and code enforcement issues, as well as replant timberland in certain areas that were affected by the surface mining and restore ponds that were allegedly mined prior to 2000, pursuant to SMARA. Ms. Davina Smith at the Humboldt County Counsel’s Office was particularly helpful to the prosecution in ensuring that the settlement addressed all outstanding issues on the properties owned by the defendants in the area.

Most crucially, the settlement requires the defendants to restore the area well above what would be required by law under SMARA. In determining what would be an acceptable minimal level of restoration, the District Attorney’s Office worked with scientists in various agencies as well as scientists hired by the defendants to determine what was optimal with regard to three restoration goals: (1) maximizing the extent of peat regeneration, (2) maximizing the flow of cold water from a nearby spring that serves during summer as a crucial cold-water refuge for endangered steelhead in the otherwise-warm Van Duzen River, and (3) durability of those two former goals for as long as practical.

Says Deputy District Attorney Carr, who prosecuted the case: “People who knowingly violate environmental laws and harm the environment should expect that they will not profit from such actions, and will be penalized for them. This was what occurred in this case. Crime did not pay. Thankfully, we were able to work with the defendants to develop a scientifically-sound restoration baseline that goes beyond what would otherwise be required by law, which makes the best of an otherwise bad situation.”

The penalty assessed in this matter is one of the largest ever to be assessed in California against non-corporate defendants for violations of section 404 of the Clean Water Act.

COMMENT from LostCoastOutpost.org: “For those of you that don't know, peat bogs are not a renewable resource in the same way that old growth redwood is not a renewable resource. Unless you can guarantee 400-10,000 years of undisturbed growth, you can't claim it's renewable. Stop using Peat based potting soil. I won't science lesson scold everybody too much about how Peat is basically a kidney for watersheds in many places, but its really not something we should be digging up for container gardening. Research it and vote with your $$$ if you give a shit.”

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TELL THE ARMY CORPS & WATER BOARD: SUSPEND THE BYPASS CONSTRUCTION PERMITS

Now is the time to act! Contact the US Army Corps of Engineers and the California State Water Board to tell them to suspend the permit for the Caltrans Willits Bypass. See below for contact info!

Construction of the Caltrans Willits Bypass is enabled by permits from the Army Corps of Engineers and the State Water Resources Control Board.  Absent these permits, Caltrans is not allowed to construct its horribly ill-conceived Interstate 5-style freeway around Willits.  The Army Corps issued its 404 Clean Water Act Permit in February 2012.

Recently, an Army Corps representative publicly stated that the Corps is close to suspending the Bypass construction permit.  Meanwhile, the State Water Board and California Department of Fish & Wildlife recently sent a strongly-worded letter to Caltrans, which also seemed to imply the Water Board is considering suspending the permit that agency issued, the 401 permit.

The Water Board Letter Stated: “Because of the multiple delays and associated extensions given by the Regional WaterBoard to Caltrans for [compliance with the 401 permit], Caltrans must provide sufficient resources to ensure that [compliance is] developed and delivered as soon as possible. Once the Regional Water Board and Caltrans agree on delivery timelines for the aboveitems, subsequent deadline extensions shall not be given.

The message to these agencies is simple: Bids for the initial mitigation work came in three times the Caltrans estimate, with no funds for the $26 million shortfall (let alone any assurance of short- and long-term success of the wetlands mitigation plan). This is emblematic of multiple delays and violations of the resource agencies’ conditions to protect wetlands, streams, cultural sites and other resources.

The permits should be immediately suspended. Then the agencies can demand a solution that includes down-sizing the unnecessary 40-acre northern interchange, which would both reduce impacts on wetlands and save taxpayers’ money, as well as other entirely feasible and reasonable changes.

Please make calls or send emails demanding immediate action.

The key contacts are:

• Jane Hicks, Chief of Regulatory Division, Army Corps of Engineers
Phone: (415) 503-6771; email jane.m.hicks@usace.army.mil.

• Brendan Thompson, Regional Water Quality Control Board
Phone (707) 576-2699; email Brendan.thompson@waterboards.ca.gov

(— SaveLittleLakeValley.org)

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WIKILEAKS PUBLISHES SECRET DRAFT CHAPTER OF TRANS-PACIFIC PARTNERSHIP

Dear Editor,

Good news. Wikileaks is alive and well. Today in the Guardian newspaper it was reported Wikileaks released the 30,000 word draft text of a chapter of the Trans-Pacific Partnershiup (TPP) agreement, a multilateral free-trade treaty currently being negotiated in secret by 12 Pacific Rim nations. The US is one of the nations. The released chapter focuses on intellectual property rights which includes areas of the law relating to pharmaceuticals and civil liberties. Interesting, Just Foreign Policy, a group dedicated to reforming US foreign policy, funded through donations, offered a $70,000 bounty if Wikileaks leaks the entire TPP text. Wikileaks will receive the bounty when the full text is released.

The article also claimed members of Congress were only allowed to view selected portions of the document under supervision. Wikileaks claims that the text shows America attempting to enforce its highly restrictive vision of intellectual property on the world and on itself. Julian Assange said, “If instituted the TPP's intellectual property regime would trample over individual rights and free expression, as well ride roughshod over the intellectual and creative commons. If you read, write, publish, think, listen, dance, sing or invent, if you farm or consume food, if you are ill now or might one day be ill, the TPP has you in its sights.” It should be noted that while Mexico, Chile, and Peru are members, Ecuador, where Assange has taken refuge, is not a member. To get the $70,000 I am sure Assange, rather than doing a full dump of the treaty, will resort to the Chinese Water Torture — drip, drip, drip — one chapter or two every week or two until he releases the text of the full treaty.

— James G. Updegraff, Sacramento

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DAISY COCKBURN & JEFFREY ST. CLAIR CELEBRATE ALEXANDER COCKBURN AND A COLOSSAL WRECK at City Lights Books

Come celebrate Alexander Cockburn and A Colossal Wreck at City Lights Books, Sunday 11/17

Verso invites you to celebrate the release of A Colossal Wreck: A Road Trip Through Political Scandal, Corruption and American Culture by Alexander Cockburn at City Lights Books Sunday, November 17th, 5:00 pm

“It’s alive on every page, this thing; its feisty sentences wriggle — A Colossal Wreck will have a long life among those who care about the crackling deployment of the English language, partly because Mr. Cockburn had such a wide-ranging mind ... His book is a stay against boredom.” — Dwight Garner, New York Times

“Alex struck American journalism like lightning,” Michael Tomasky of the Daily Beast wrote in July, 2012, after the passing of radical journalist Alexander Cockburn. Indeed, as one of the most influential writers of his generation, the Irish American Cockburn had introduced a singular and much-needed critical voice to the Nation, the Village Voice, Wall Street Journal, his own powerful newsletter, CounterPunch, and many other publications. “At once a fearless campaigner and matchless stylist, Cockburn” — in the words of the Atlantic — “would say all the outrageous things his blank Yank counterparts lack the wit, courage, erudition, or pater-spirit to utter on their own.”

ColossalWreckA Colossal Wreck is the final masterpiece from Cockburn, assembled as a riotous road trip through the last decade of American politics and culture. Along the way, Cockburn deploys his caustic wit to skewer the hypocrisy and corruption in Washington — from the warmongering of Bush and Cheney to the liberal hypocrisies of Clinton and Obama — and reflects with astonishing insight upon the defining moments of the era: ethnic cleansing in the Balkans, the cruelties of Palestinian occupation, 9/11 and the ensuing invasions, the Wall Street crash, and more.

Told with candor and spirit, Cockburn’s provocative political travelogue is woven through with deep learning and unique insights, as he frankly brings us into intimate contact with the works and lives of famous friends and enemies alike. His heartfelt memoriam to Edward Said, acerbic reflections on ex-friend Christopher Hitchens, and pithy remarks on his many dealings with other literary power players paint a picture of a journalist with irrepressible verve and unflagging convictions.

With a legacy that lives on not only in innumerable columns, articles and books, but also in the many writers he mentored, Cockburn’s career was a tumultuous ride across America’s intellectual landscape. To celebrate the Bay Area launch of A Colossal Wreck, join Daisy Cockburn and Jeffrey St. Clair Sunday, November 17th, 5 PM

City Lights Books 261 Columbus Avenue at Broadway (North Beach) San Francisco, California 94133

More information here.

Praise for A Colossal Wreck

“My copy of A Colossal Wreck is festooned with little blue Post-Its to mark pages of crunchy quotability, and the enormous pleasure I get from this collection is tempered by the pang of wishing Alex and his voice on the page were still here.” — James Wolcott, Vanity Fair

“A Colossal Wreck provides ample evidence for Cockburn's standing as one of the left's most perceptive and entertaining commentators.” — The Guardian

“Between the malevolence of the Republicans and the mediocrity of the Democrats, the last four decades have been a pretty dismal time to be a left-wing radical in the United States. Few of us have stayed scrappy; still fewer have kept a sense of humor. Cockburn — hedonist, populist, brawler, dandy — made it a little easier. I wish the next generation one of him.” — George Scialabba, The Los Angeles Review of Books

“A fine trip through a rambunctious, productive, provocative and well-lived life.” — Kirkus Reviews

“This is a book that exhales life and comes with that brio which is characteristic of Alexander Cockburn.” — Vijay Prashad, CounterPunch Alexander Cockburn was the co-editor of CounterPunch and the author of a number of titles, including Corruptions of Empire, The Golden Age Is in Us, Washington Babylon and Imperial Crusades. Brought up in Ireland, he moved to America in 1972 writing for the Village Voice, the Nation and many other journals. He died in July 2012.

A Colossal Wreck: A Road Trip Through Political Scandal, Corruption, and American Culture Publication: September 10, 2013 ISBN 978-1-78168-119-0/ $29.95/ 498 pages/ Hardback

Join the debate on Twitter, Facebook and our Blog Copyright © 2013 Verso Books, All rights reserved.

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HERE ARE THE RAW ELECTION RESULTS for the various districts which held elections in Mendocino County.

COUNTY OF MENDOCINO

CONSOLIDATED DISTRICT ELECTION

NOVEMBER 5, 2013

Summary For Jurisdiction Wide, All Counters, All Races

FINAL OFFICIAL RESULTS

Registered Voters 44197 - Cards Cast 11046 24.99%

Num. Report Precinct 232 - Num. Reporting 232 100.00%

 

UUSD - TA C (One seat)

Total Number of Precincts 125

Precincts Reporting 125

Total Votes 4237

MICHAEL WEIDNER 471

CAROLYN BARRETT 3724

Write-in Votes 42

 

PV USD Long Term (Two seats)

Total Number of Precincts 5

Precincts Reporting 5

Total Votes 522

KAREN E. RIORDAN 160

ELAINE LINDELEF 134

PAUL R. JOHNSON 225

Write-in Votes 3

 

PV USD Short Term (One seat)

Total

Number of Precincts 5

Precincts Reporting 5

Total Votes 364

WENDIE D. FRENCH 122

KATIE DELBAR 238

Write-in Votes 4

 

RND VLY USD Long Term (Three seats)

Total Number of Precincts 8

Precincts Reporting 8

Total Votes 650

CYNTHIA O'FERRALL 206

HENRY MANGEL 102

PETER D. BAUER 189

AMANDA BRITTON 145

Write-in Votes 8

 

RND VLY USD Short Term (Two seats)

Total Number of Precincts 8

Precincts Reporting 8

Total Votes 463

LEW CHICHESTER 153

TONY TUCKER 168

MARCUS W. SPIVEY, II 138

Write-in Votes 4

 

WILLITS USD (Three seats)

Total Number of Precincts 26

Precincts Reporting 26

Total Votes 4569

CYNTHIA N. CARNI 1200

LAURIE HARRIS 1240

BOB HARPER 1015

CHRISTOPHER J. NEARY 1034

Write-in Votes 80

 

ARENA SCHOOLS (Four seats)

Total Number of Precincts 11

Precincts Reporting 11

Total Votes 2472

CINDY CIONE 420

ROBERT SHIMON 555

ANGELA MARQUEZ 316

LESLIE TAYLOR BATES 488

M. VIKKI ROBINSON 419

SUZANNE L. RUSH 258

Write-in Votes 16

 

BROOKTRAILS CSD (Three seats)

Total Number of Precincts 6

Precincts Reporting 6

Total Votes 1345

ROY R. WILLIAMS 268

TONY ORTH 308

GINO N. ZALUNARDO 157

GEORGE SKEZAS 270

DAVID PALAND 232

Write-in Votes 110

 

ELK CSD (Three seats)

Total Number of Precincts 4

Precincts Reporting 4

Total Votes 334

ED OLIVEIRA 94

PAUL J. McCARTHY 18

BEN MACMILLAN 91

CECILIA ROY 32

MICHAEL POWERS 93

Write-in Votes 6

 

FB FPD (Three seats)

Total Number of Precincts 26

Precincts Reporting 26

Total Votes 2738

DONNA HEWITT 718

DAN MAAS 754

DAVID A. BRADLEY 615

CLARK E. RISHEL 645

Write-in Votes 6

 

MC REC PARK (Three seats)

Total Number of Precincts 66

Precincts Reporting 66

Total Votes 7738

WILLIAM J. HAYES, JR 2070

CESAR A. YANEZ 2151

LEO K. DIKINIS 1084

BOB BUSHANSKY 2336

Write-in Votes 97

 

RR FLOOD (Three seats)

Total Number of Precincts 91

Precincts Reporting 91

Total Votes 7431

JUDY A. HATCH 1876

PAUL ZELLMAN 1780

RICHARD SHOEMAKER 1950

FRANK McMICHAEL 1771

Write-in Votes 54

 

MILLVIEW WTR (Three seats)

Total Number of Precincts 20

Precincts Reporting 20

Total Votes 1306

JERRY CARDOZA 365

LINDA MASON 244

JEANNE K. METCALF 306

KENNETH D. BUDROW 380

Write-in Votes 11

 

UKIAH VLY FPD (Two seats)

Total Number of Precincts 52

Precincts Reporting 52

Total Votes 2307

ALLEN CHERRY 709

DC "BUTCH" CARPENTER 962

LEE HOWARD 627

Write-in Votes 9

 

MEASURE I (Special Tax for Replacement Fire Station — Little Lake Fire Protection District)

Total Number of Precincts 18

Precincts Reporting 18

Total Votes 1573

YES 956

NO 617

(Failed; did not get required two-thirds vote.)

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SIGNAL RIDGE FUNDRAISER FOR EQUIP MANYATTA

Friday November 29th  - Sunday December 1st. 11am-6pm

All proceeds from the Signal Ridge tasting room Thanksgiving weekend benefit the Manyatta Youth Resource Centre of Kenya. Sparkling wine will be $25 each or $99 for 6. Rose bottles will be $12 each or two for $20. Kenyan handcrafts and jewelry also available. Philo native Keevan Labowitz established the US non-profit Equip Manyatta and the MYRC, which provides sports, music, dance, and drama activities for kids in Western Kenya’s largest slum. He’s going back in December—your donation will make an immediate impact! For photos and current information about the project go to www.GlobalGiving.org and search for Manyatta; keevan.labowitz@gmail.com. Signal Ridge is at the Madrones south of Philo 9000 Highway 128, phone: 707-895-3588.

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THE WALDORF SCHOOL OF MENDOCINO COUNTY’S 41ST ANNUAL HOLIDAY FAIR, will take place on Sunday, December 8, from 11 am to 5 pm, at Carl Purdy Hall, Ukiah Fairgrounds.  Featuring an Artisan Marketplace with local handmade crafts, Gourmet Café, Children’s Activities, Live Music, and an Exciting Raffle.  Free admission.  For more information call 707-485-8719, or visit www.waldorfmendocino.com."

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COUNTY & CITY TAX SHARING AGENDA

The November 19, 2013, agenda for the County and City Tax Sharing Ad Hoc Committee has been posted online at the following location:

http://www.co.mendocino.ca.us/bos/meetingsArchive.htm?type=3

Please contact the Executive Office at (707) 463-4441 with any

questions.

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MENDOCINO COAST BOTANICAL GARDENS NEWS

BotGardens1. Taxodium distichum

Swamp Cypress do well in our moist local environment.

Taxodium distichum are a long lived (some tree’s are 1600 years and older) deciduous conifer that thrives in wet area’s and swamps throughout the eastern states and as far west as central Texas. Also known as the Swamp or Bald Cypress they do well in our local environment if kept in moist or wet areas. This cypress is known for her “knee’s” that are actually part of the root system that grow upwards out of the soil or swamps in which they grow. Being a member of the Cupressaceae family, the Swamp Cypress closely resembles the Dawn Redwood (Metasequoia glyptostroboides) with her radiant green needle-like leaves in the summer that turn to a gorgeous hue of cinnamon-red in the fall before going “Bald” in the winter. This wonderful tree brings interest to gardens throughout all the seasons.

2. Mushroom ID for Beginners-Workshop & Walk

November 16, November 23, and December 7, 2013.

Ever wonder what the difference is between a toadstool and a mushroom?

If this question comes to mind when the rains start to fall, this is the class for you.

MCBG Naturalist Mario Abreu will have specimens and handouts to guide you in understanding the wild mushroom, and the class will be followed by a guided walk through the Garden at 1:30 pm (come prepared for all weather). This popular class is space-limited, so call now to reserve your space 707-964-4352 ext 16.

Workshop 10:00am - 1:00pm

Field Walk 1:30pm to around 3:00pm

Bring a lunch or visit Rhody's Garden Cafe

$15 Members/$20 Non-members

3. Mushroom Walk Mondays are Here!

Monday, November 11, 2013 through Monday, December 23, 2013

Join staff Naturalist Mario Abreu on a weekly Monday walk for mushrooms throughout the Garden

Mario will lead mushroom walks every Monday, November 11th through December 23rd at the Gardens. Mushroom identification, biology, edibility, myths and the good times that all come along with a mushroom walk will be included. Warning: exposure to the mushroom world can be habit-forming!

Weather permitting; come prepared for wet, off-trail hiking.

Date & Time Info

1:30pm Meet at the Gardens Plaza

Free with Gardens' Admission

4. Festival of Lights 2013

Celebrate the season of light, and enjoy a casual supper at Rhody's Garden Cafe. December 6th thru December 22nd, 2013

Spend a dazzling evening in the Gardens as thousands of lights transform the Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens into a Magical Winter Wonderland.

A spectacular fountain on an island leads visitors to the Perennial garden where swaths of tulips delight the senses, a spider in a web lights a tree and a blanket of stars provides the perfect backdrop for pictures.

BE AMAZED. BE DELIGHTED. COME FOR THE FUN!

LIVE MUSIC, BEER & WINE and HOLIDAY TREATS.

RHODY'S GARDEN CAFE will be open and serving a casual supper menu during the event.

Adults $10 / Children 15 and under FREE.

Click Here for dates and times, featured music, and more information.

3 Responses to Mendocino County Today: November 16, 2013

  1. Tom Cod Reply

    November 16, 2013 at 6:32 am

    Hey Gomer, only hicks, or politicians pandering to their illiteracy, say “Democrat Party”.

    • Harvey Reading Reply

      November 16, 2013 at 12:04 pm

      Yeah, the really smart ones call it the democrapic party, or the slightly-left-of-far-right wing of the rethuglicrapic party.

  2. Peter Warner Reply

    November 16, 2013 at 10:05 am

    About planing swamp cypress, Taxodium distichum, I have some questions and suggestions. Does anyone at MCBG or elsewhere have evidence will not become yet another plague of invasive trees disrupting coastal ecosystems? Since this tree has not been planted in the area to any significant extent, I will presume that this is yet another example of humans conducting an uncontrolled ecological experiment. Many such “experiments” have turned out to have quite a negative effect on local ecology. Promoting introduction of non-native plants should require that the gardeners who do so assume accountability for any forthcoming ecological damage. (Ha!)

    The Sonoma and Mendocino County coasts already host burgeoning populations of locally non-native trees and shrubs, such as Monterey pine, Monterey cypress, Tasmanian bluegum, blackwood acacia, gray wattle acacia, and Parney cotoneaster, initially introduced and established here by horticulturists and gardeners, to the everlasting detriment of native shrubs, trees, wildlife, and soil. Why not plant locally native plants that are important to wildlife, replacing some of those lost to residential development and short-sighted ecological ignorance? Native trees and shrubs that do well in wet places include several species of willow, California wax myrtle, shore pine, California rhododendron, black huckleberry, Mendocino cypress, and Sitka spruce.

    Removing invasive plants that have negative ecological consequences — and simply displacing native species results in direct and indirect impacts to native plants and animals — costs private and public managers millions of dollars a year in California alone. Invasive plants can alter soil chemistry and hydrology, and compromise the potential for ecosystems and species to survive other human-related ecological damage, including climate change. Do local ecosystems really need another challenge incurred by human ignorance?

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