Mendocino County Today: Friday, Apr 15, 2016
by AVA News Service, April 14, 2016
A TERRIBLE ACCIDENT on the Willits side of the Willits Grade near Walker Road Thursday morning at 11:20 killed one person and injured six others. A southbound Mazda SUV, apparently trying to pass a slower moving vehicle veered into the oncoming lane, initiating a six-vehicle pile-up. The driver of the Mazda died at the scene.
TRAFFIC in both directions was backed up into Willits in the north, Redwood Valley to the south, as 101 was closed in both directions for three hours, reopening a little after 2pm.
CHP Collision Report
YOU'RE NOW BEING TRANSFERRED TO LISTEN ONLY MODE
On Wednesday night Judge Candidate Keith Faulder’s held a phone-in town hall meeting. After some friendly chit-chat with the first few callers and asking them if they had follow-up questions after jovially answering their questions, it was my turn. I quoted some excerpts from the below Deputy Sheriff’s Association statement in 2014 in which they opposed the construction of a new County Courthouse.
“I think everyone in the room is familiar with some of the well-known issues involved there and the impact it would have on the downtown should the courthouse be relocated. Although we share those sentiments, our organization is concerned about the county's potential exposure to costs that will be in our opinion forced upon us by the relocation. We are referring specifically to the idea that the proposed new courthouse would house strictly court employees and that the county employees who currently are housed within the existing court facility and nearby would have to travel that extra distance. We don't think that's a feasible alternative for the medium or long term. What we envision is the county being forced at some point to construct another building down by the new courthouse or lease space at substantial cost and that we would then be on the hook for maintenance of the old and abandoned facility and all of these things could easily run into the millions of dollars in cost for the county that the state, as far as we can tell, is not factoring into their planning. … We feel that some reasonable renovations to the existing structure could be made at a fraction of the cost. We realize that this project is being driven by the State Office of the Courts and not by the county and not by some other local agency. Nevertheless, we think that because of that ancillary exposure to the County and to the county employees that we really need to work together and oppose this project…”
I THEN ASKED THE CANDIDATE if he really though a new courthouse was necessary.
I HAD HOPED that Mr. Faulder would at least take a safe, neutral stance on the project, acknowledging that there were some unanswered questions, that perhaps the Courts should at least pick up the tab for the cost of the new courthouse’s impact on other county offices — maybe a little judicial on-the-one-hand / on-the other hand… Maybe even a little give and take on the subject.
BUT I WAS WRONG. Faulder immediately launched into a near-verbatim recitation of Judge Dave Nelson’s unconvincing party-line talking points about safety and security during prisoner shuttling, and disability access compliance. Faulder had even memorized the exact budgeted cost of the new courthouse — $98 million — which he insisted was all state funds, not county funds, completely missing the point about the fiscal impact on other County departments. (And as if the Deputy Sheriffs hadn’t taken the shuttle-security issue into account in their opposition.)
HAVING HEARD previous callers get a chance to follow up, I was just about to say, “If I’d wanted Dave Nelson’s opinion I would have asked him. But you missed the point that the County will have to pick up the tab for all the disruptions in the other departments… And that the Deputy Sheriffs were certainly aware of the safety issue…” But instead, I was quickly hung up on and told by a disembodied recorded female voice: “You are now being transferred to listen-only mode.”
TOO BAD THE CANDIDATE’S NOT.
(— Mark Scaramella)
TRAVELING BEHAVIORAL HEALTH ROAD SHOW COMING TO ANDERSON VALLEY
Greetings to Anderson Valley from the "Traveling Mendocino County Mental Health Board." We are now known as the Behavioral Health Advisory Board. Our April 20th Regular Meeting will be held in your area for the first time in many years. You are cordially invited to attend our meeting and address our Board on issues and concerns regarding the delivery of County Mental Health services to your local population. A whirlwind of activity, changes and transition has enveloped our county in the last few months. We will be sharing our concerns and understanding and listening to yours related to mental health issues. We will be meeting just 1.3 miles north of town on 128 at the Red Museum Property 12340 Highway 128 @10:00 AM on April 20th. Our Agenda is posted at the meeting site and online at
Hope to see you there.
John Wetzler, Board Chair
DOG O' THE DAY — Stella is a real sweetheart.
She's 32 pounds and 8 years old. She's been at the shelter for about a month, and she is now relaxing at a foster home in the manner to which she would like to become accustomed. Stella was a stray, and brought to the shelter covered with ticks. But, as always, she's not gonna hold that against folks, and she would LOVE to make herself comfy in a quiet, loving home. To meet Stella, give the Mendocino County Animal Care Services Ukiah Shelter a jingle to set up a meet and greet: 707-467-6453.
NEED HOUSE ASAP — Family two weeks from being homeless
Hi listserv people. I need your help. My family and I need a place ASAP. We can pay 1st and deposit and up to $1200 a month or more… We're being forced out of our home since the apartment upstairs is collapsing into our downstairs apartment. We had three months to find another place and either nothing is going or not enough space. We want something in the Fort Bragg area because that's where work and school is. My in-laws have lived at the same apartment for 12 years, always paying on time and are very responsible about their living space. My mother in law works in housekeeping and down in the sea urchin plant. My father in law does landscaping and all kinds of odd jobs and is a handy man. If anyone can help us please message me ASAP. It's frustrating not being able to find somewhere to live and I dread having to live out of my car. Please if there are any leads, we've tried Century 21 etc. No luck. Just looking for a place even if it's a one or two bedroom. We can make it work till we find something bigger. Please and thank you in advanced.
SUSIE de CASTRO WRITES:
My daughter in NY (my other daughter in Hawaii is also a berner)”
“Feelin the Bern at the Bernie Sanders rally yesterday! So many people! I didn’t even make it inside the Washington Square park!”
on squares of old sidewalk
discornered in a swerve of lost
forgotten town sit gentlemen cordial
calling hellos and passing a bottle in a bag
weeds in flower violet white
and the largest wooden trestle bridge
beyond some rooftops down that cleft
humming streams of speed opposed
along a straight line of lofted paint
over a little harbor thrashing
a gritty pair of cranky gas pumps
at the packed to the inch general store
beside lumpy patches cracked macadam
plaza Albion with post office and flagstaff
assuring rescue by land and sea and air
and Mendocino Transit Authority MTA
arriving presumably in thirteen minutes
eager to compensate for driving past me
last week in my orange cap without stopping
and what that cost me takes much huffing
to tell so don't add insult to injury
with a free bus ticket just an easy ride
along the soaring diving rippling line
looking out to sea
did Drake land striding through the surf
and place the name and gestured
sidewalk of cement someday
A READER WRITES
I listen to a ton of radio and rarely tune in to M. Krasny. He’s good sometimes, but not particularly progressive, and handles criticism of Israel very poorly. I’m about as critical of KPFA as you, especially the 911 conspiracy, anti-vaccine nuts on “Guns & Butter,” and the homeopathy-touting “Your Own Health and Fitness,” but there’s good stuff. Mitch Jeserich conducts far more interesting interviews than Krasny on his “Letters and Politics” at 10:00 M-Th. And Richard Wolff takes over that hour Friday with his “Economic Update.” At noon M,T,W “Against the Grain” is about the only really intellectual program on all the airways. And KPFA is the only station that regularly provides news of Palestine: especially interesting is “Voices of the Middle East and North Africa,” Wed. 2:00. And Doug Henwood! Great hour Thursdays at noon, “Behind the News.” And on Tuesdays at 2:00 there’s Michio Kaku’s “Exploration” (science!!!) and at 3:30 “Work Week Radio” with Steve Zeltzer -- the only labor program I know. Michael says you probably can’t get KALW (91.7), but it’s a much better station than KQED and does local programing. Rose Aguilar’s program “Your Call” M-F is usually more interesting than what Krasny offers at that time, and she’s a great interviewer. Her Friday “Media Roundup” is excellent — she has 2-3 reporters from all over the globe discussing the week’s headlines. David Cay Johnston and John Nichols are frequent guests. This Friday hour repeats at 5:00, but not the others. KALW also carries “Counterspin,” 7:30 Fri., the half hour analysis of the week’s news by FAIR in NYC. (KPFA offers this Fridays at 3:00.) And KALW has “Alternative Radio” Mondays, 1:00 and a great science program “Big Picture Science,” 1:00 Tuesdays with one hour a month devoted to skepticism. Their music program “Tangents” by Dore Stein is stellar, Saturdays 8:00-midnite. So, pretty good stuff to search out. Explore beyond Krasny and I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised.
CITY HELD HOSTAGE BY TERRORISTS
by Judy Valadao
The Fort Bragg City Council meeting was held at Town Hall beginning at 6:00 on Monday April 11, 2016.
First on the agenda were the Mayor’s Recognitions and Announcements. Family and friends of the City’s newest employees were present to watch as the employees were introduced to the community. Congratulations go out to: Keyona Martinez, Community Services Officer; Mateo Ortiz, Audio-Visual Technician; Scott Schneider, Administrative Services Director; Natalie Gregory, Grant Assistant; Chantell O’Neal, Associate Planner; Pamela Davidson, Temporary Office Assistant, Finance; Isaac Whippy, Government Accountant II; Nancy Atkinson, Temporary Associate City Engineer.
The Mayor’s Well Done Awards were presented to: David and Karen Gidley, new residential construction; Paul Meyer, residential façade; Habitat for Humanity of the Mendocino Coast, new housing complex; Taco Bell, new commercial construction; Golden West, commercial façade; Point Noyo Restaurant, commercial remodel; Mendo Lake Credit Union, commercial landscaping; Cypress Ridge Apartments, sustainable design; Wrens Boutique, best sign; Astoria, best window display and Dot & Twine, best window display.
A presentation of Proclamation was made by Vice Mayor Lindy Peters acknowledging Douglas Moody as the recipient of the Jazz Journalists Association’s 2016 Jazz Hero Award.
A presentation, by LEAN Energy US regarding Mendocino County’s efforts in exploring a Countywide Community Choice Energy (CCE) program was very interesting (I did not get the presenters names). CCE allows local governments to procure and/or develop power on behalf of their communities. See the CCE pamphlet on the link below:
Officer Brandon McGregor and K-9 Takoda were recognized for rounding up a suspect who tried to get away from Officers south of the Noyo Bridge. It took K-9 Takoda less than two minutes to find the suspect. The suspect was taken into custody without incident.
Matters from the Council started with City Manager Linda Ruffing announcing a big party in celebration of the Coastal Trail to be held on Saturday June 4, 2016. The party will be on the South Coastal Trail from noon till 4:00 p.m. There will be food, music, speakers, a beer garden and kids games. The Noyo Center will have the Whale bones out for display. Sounds like lots of fun so plan to attend.
Ms. Ruffing then gave a brief report on the Summers Lane Reservoir project. The project was put out to bid and 6 bids were received. Ms. Ruffing was very pleased with the pricing. Ms. Ruffing went on to say the City has “hit a road block with funding” coming from the Department of Water Resources (DWR). One of the conditions for funds to be released is for all permits to be in order. The Department of Fish and Wildlife has communicated with DWR that the City is not in compliance with section 1602. She went on to say it’s complicated and a mess but fortunately the City was able to obtain assistance from Senator McGuire, Assembly Member Wood and Staff at the Governor’s Office of Emergency Services who helped us through the drought and water emergency last fall. They are trying to open up the communications. Ms. Ruffing will keep everyone posted on any more information she receives.
Mayor Dave Turner made the following statement: “They are holding our reservoir hostage. The people of Fort Bragg you know what we went through last year except they protested it to start with. We wouldn’t have gone through what we did last year if they hadn’t fought this. They lost that battle so they said ‘hey we can fight the money’. So, they are holding us hostage to get something they have been trying to get for five years which the court gave them. Now we are proceeding but we can’t just say ‘whatever you say’. So, they are holding us hostage and I don’t think we should negotiate with terrorists.” (watch 1 hour 28 minutes into the video and hear the statement )
Councilman Peters asked that anyone writing letters to The Department of Fish and Wildlife be kind and make their point about how they feel.
During public comment on non agenda items Linda Jupiter was the first to speak. Her comment was to ask the City to write a letter in support of SB 1288 Local Options for Elections. She stated in 2009 the City endorsed a similar bill AB 1121. That bill was vetoed by then Governor Schwarzenegger. She is hoping SB 1288 will do better under Governor Brown.
I was the next to speak and reminded Mayor Turner that referring to The Department of Fish and Wildlife as terrorists may just come back and bite him on the backside. I also asked Council and Staff if anyone is monitoring programs funded by the CDBG as required in the regulations. The CDBG regulations state: the Grantee shall monitor the performance of grant-supported activities to assure that time schedules are being met and the milestones in the work schedule are being accomplished. This review shall be made for each activity in the approved grant agreement. I had spoke with Jennifer Owen Special Projects Manager and was informed the City is not the Grantee. On page one of the agreement between the Hospitality Center and the City of Fort Bragg dated Feb. 9, 2015 it clearly says "City of Fort Bragg is the GRANTEE", and at the bottom of the document lists Jennifer Owen as Grantee. On Feb. 8, 2016 Mr. Gary Johnson President of the Hospitality Center Board stated: “the Giving Garden program is not designed for job training but instead teaches grooming, punctuality and how to interview for a job.” When he made the statement I questioned it because I thought $186,047.00 was a lot of money to teach grooming. No one from the Council or Staff questioned Mr. Johnson when he made the remark which leads me to believe they didn’t know why they had given the Hospitality Center/Giving Garden $186,047.00. (more on this later)
Doug Chouteau asked Council to take a similar approach to homeless encampments as Humboldt County has taken. Humboldt County authorities went into the homeless camps and gave warning if they did not leave they would face arrest. With fire season upon us perhaps the City could ask the Sheriff Office for help in clearing out the camps along the watersheds, train tracks and other areas around the City. Mr. Chouteau thought the City would carry more weight if they asked for the encampments to be vacated. He then suggested perhaps the Fort Bragg Police Department would take similar action with encampments inside the city limits such as squatters in vacant buildings and campers inside Johnson Park. Mr. Chouteau told of being approached in Johnson Park and warned by another park visitor not to go beyond a certain point because of potential homeless camps. Another visitor advised him not to in during the evening hours. He pointed out that those in greatest danger are the homeless who are forced to be in the park. Action needs to be taken to make the area safer and to make sure a disastrous fire doesn’t occur during the fire season.
George Reinhardt read from a letter that is published in the April 14th edition of the Advocate News regarding the Mill Site clean-up. Mr. Reinhardt asked that everyone attend a Community Workshop to be held Thursday April 21st at Town Hall in Fort Bragg at 6:30 p.m. The Workshop is being held by The Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC). Another Workshop is planned for June 2nd to obtain input on the Draft Remedial Action Plan. If you get a chance attend this workshop, I’m sure Mr. Reinhardt has a lot of questions for DTSC and the answers to those questions should be very important to the community of Fort Bragg, surrounding areas and visitors as well.
Item 6A on the agenda was consideration modifications to the “City Council’s Goals and Objectives” as discussed at the mid-year budget review session. You can read the goals and modifications on the following link:
Item 7B adopt City Council Resolution confirming the continued existence of a local drought emergency in the City of Fort Bragg.
Item 8A on the agenda was closed session for the purpose of evaluation of the City Manager.
Anyone interested in being notified of upcoming agenda items can sign up by following this link
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THIS JUST IN
Update on Summers Lane Reservoir Project from Fort Bragg City Notes:
After a flurry of emails and a great deal of consternation, the Governor’s Office of Emergency Services stepped in to coordinate a massive conference call where agreements were reached to allow for the release of funds. The City Council will consider awarding the contract for construction of the reservoir on its April 25th agenda. Our hope is the reservoir will be constructed by mid-July and we can begin to fill it, thus having some water storage available for use in the late fall should stream flows recede to levels similar to those experienced last year.
COMING SOON TO FORT BRAGG
April 14, 2016
Measure U - Prohibiting Social Service Organizations in the Central Business District
The question that will be put to the voters of Fort Bragg in the June 7, 2016 Primary Election is this: “Shall Chapter 18.22 of the Municipal Code of the City of Fort Bragg be amended to provide that a social service organization is a prohibited use within the Central Business District unless such organization was established and existed at a location within the district prior to January 1, 2015?” It is important that voters educate themselves about the ballot measure. The full text of the proposed ordinance, the City Attorney’s impartial analysis, the arguments for and against the measure, and the rebuttals to those arguments can be viewed on the City’s website (https://city.fortbragg.com). Follow the link on the website’s front page. The League of Women Voters will be holding a Measure U Election Forum on Friday, April 22nd from 6-7:30 PM at the Redwood Coast Senior Center in Fort Bragg. I urge you to get informed and vote on June 7th.
April 20th Public Works & Facilities Committee Meeting
The Wednesday, April 20th Public Works & Facilities Committee meeting will be held at 6 PM at Fort Bragg Town Hall. We’ve invited all of the residents along Cedar Street to come and weigh in on whether or not the plastic speed bumps that were removed earlier this year should be re-installed. The Committee will also be discussing how and when community input should be solicited for various City projects and activities.
April 21st DTSC Workshop on Mill Site Remediation
On Thursday, April 21st, the State Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) will hold a Community Workshop at 6:30 PM at Fort Bragg Town Hall. DTSC has mailed a Fact Sheet about the status of the Mill Site cleanup work to local residents both within and outside of the City. The Fact Sheet identifies “interim” remediation activities that Georgia-Pacific hopes to implement later this summer in accordance with a proposed Remedial Action Workplan (RAW). The work would occur in Operable Unit E which includes the Mill Pond, other wetland and riparian areas, and the lowland terrestrial area in the central portion of the Georgia-Pacific property. A Feasibility Study and Remedial Action Plan (RAP) would still be required in order for the Operable Unit E site remediation to be completed. Next week’s workshop will provide an opportunity for DTSC to explain the proposed cleanup actions and answer questions. Another workshop will be held on June 2nd to obtain input on the Draft RAW.
The City’s Finance Department and management team are deep into preparation of the Fiscal Year 2016-17 Budget. We strive for a lean and balanced budget that commits the necessary resources to enable our staff to continue to provide a high level of service to our community. We hope to add one maintenance worker position to our Public Works crew this year. Otherwise, staffing levels are expected to remain steady. The City Council will conduct a Budget Workshop on Wednesday, May 18th at 3 PM at Fort Bragg Town Hall. The Budget Workshop involves very detailed discussions about the City’s work plan for the coming year. Everyone is welcome to attend and the meeting will be livestreamed and televised.
Update on Summers Lane Reservoir Project
The City hit a bump in the road with its new reservoir project last week when the State agency administering a $700,000 grant for construction of the reservoir indicated that funds would not be released until the City obtained permits from the California Department of Fish & Wildlife for its three water diversions. After a flurry of emails and a great deal of consternation, the Governor’s Office of Emergency Services stepped in to coordinate a massive conference call where agreements were reached to allow for the release of the grant funds. The City Council will consider awarding a contract for construction of the reservoir on its April 25th agenda. Our hope is that the reservoir will be constructed by mid-July and we can begin to fill it, thus having some water storage available for use in the late fall should stream flows recede to levels similar to those experienced last year.
Celebrate Fort Bragg!!
The City’s planning efforts are well underway for a big community party at the south end of Noyo Headlands Park on Saturday, June 4th from noon to 4 PM. Fort Bragg has a lot to celebrate, including our fabulous new Coastal Trail!! The party will be free and all are welcome to attend. There will be speakers, live music, entertainment, delicious food, whale bones, a Noyo Center beer garden, kiddie games, and much, much more.
Mark Your Calendars
Information on upcoming public meetings can be found on the “Upcoming Agenda Items” pages on the City’s website or by signing up for meeting notifications using the “Notify Me” feature at https://city.fortbragg.com. The following public meetings are planned in April and early May:
Wednesday, April 20th at 6 PM, Fort Bragg Town Hall- Public Works & Facilities Committee Meeting. Agenda topics include: Cedar Street Speed Bumps, Neighborhood Notification Protocols, Presentation by ABM Regarding Public Works Services.
Thursday, April 21st at 6:30 PM, Fort Bragg Town Hall- DTSC Community Workshop on Mill Site Remediation. Monday, April 25th at 6 PM, Fort Bragg Town Hall- City Council Meeting. Tentative agenda includes: Award of contract for Summers Lane Reservoir project.
Tuesday, April 26th at 3 PM, City Hall Conference Room- Community Development Committee Meeting. Tentative agenda includes: Nuisance abatement. Wednesday, May 4th at 3 PM, City Hall Conference Room- Tentative agenda includes: Review of Final Cost Allocation Plan and Municipal Financial Health Diagnostic Tool.
Monday, May 9th at 6 PM, Fort Bragg Town Hall- City Council Meeting. Tentative agenda includes: Discussion of Medical Marijuana Regulations.
(City Notes is published on the second and fourth Thursday of each month. If you have questions or suggestions regarding the column, feel free to contact City Manager Linda Ruffing at (707) 961-2823, ext. 118 or LRuffing@fortbragg.com.)
THE MENDOCINO COUNTY OFFICE OF EDUCATION.
Read The Numbers and Weep.
2014 Top Salaries For The Mendocino County Office of Education
Full list of all 403 2014 salaried employees:
By our count there are about 150 full-time employees paid by MCOE, almost of 100 of them pull down over $50k each in total pay and benefits.
MCOE Staff Directory:
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FIFTY YEARS AGO, there was the superintendent and two clerks in a small office on Low Gap Road. Now this! This apparatus should have been dismantled years ago, its nebulous functions returned to the individual school districts of Mendocino County, if those nebulous functions need to exist in the first place.
DRIVE TO UKIAH. Stop the first ten people you meet on the street. Ask them what “MCOE” means. If they don't know, and I'd bet a hundred bucks they wouldn't, then ask, “Where is the County Office of Education?” You'll get answers ranging from Mendocino College to Ukiah High School. No one will know what it is, what it does, where it's located. (Hint: Drive east from Ukiah on Talmage.)
WHEN you get to Talmage, ask the first person you see, Say, Bub, what's out here anyhow? Answer: "There's that Buddhist place with the good restaurant." Where is the Mendocino County Office of Education? "Never heard of it."
SLOW DOWN, CHIEF
To the Editor:
This morning I was northbound on Hwy. 101 north of Hopland when the Hopland Fire District administrator vehicle approached from behind at a high rate of speed. I was going 60 in the allegedly unsafe area and he was going far faster. As the vehicle approached, I flashed 55 with my hands. The driver laughed, waved and accelerated.
Clearly not on his way to a call, he was saying “I’m better than you and above the law.“ He reached 70-plus in the 55 and 80-plus in the 65. I risked a citation to capture his arrogance on my dash camera. He never activated lights and drove to the area of the north end fire station.
Who do you report the head of a department to? I’m hoping by reporting him to his alleged bosses (the taxpayers) that his arrogance might subside. A marked vehicle gives you no right to drive unsafely when not responding to an emergency and he should be ashamed.
Ken Good, Ukiah
LEONA'S PINOLEVILLE POT RAID CLAIM
Notice of Claim against the County of Mendocino
Date of Loss: September 22-24, 2015.
Time of Loss: During pendency of the execution of a search warrant originally dated September 21, 2015 (though "21" was crossed out by hand and “22” was handwritten in). The search and seizure operations conducted by the County, its officers, agents and employees took place throughout the daytime hours of September 22, 23 and 24, 2015.
Location of Loss: The buildings and property located within the Pinoleville Pomo Nation Rancheria, an Indian reservation under federal law, including the buildings, homes, tribal office, and property at 650 Pinoleville Drive and 2150 North State Street.
Description of Incident which caused you to make this claim:
Execution of search warrant identified as case number 15-026, Superior Court of California, County of Mendocino, dated September 22, 2015 at 7:52 which resulted in a three-day raid and seizure operation carried out by Mendocino County officials, agents and employees on September 22-24, 2015.
What specific injury, damages or other losses did you concur?
Unlawful seizure and or destruction of entire, nearly mature crop of approximately 400 medicinal grade cannabis plants growing on the reservation property at 650 Pinoleville Drive; damage to agricultural infrastructure and materials; cost of labor and materials to grow the plants (and as otherwise explained below).
These injuries meet the definition of "injury." Government Code 810.8 defines injury as "death, injury to a person, damage to or loss of property, or any other injury that a person may suffer to his person, reputation, character, feelings of estate, of such nature that it would be actionable if inflicted by a private person."); government code 911.2 regarding submission of "a claim relating to a cause of action for death or injury to persons or to personal property for growing crops"); and other violation of legal rights including the following: injunctive relief under Public Law 280 to enjoin County and its officials, agents and employees from further actions exceeding the limits of Public Law 280; declaratory relief that the sheriff's actions detailed herein were unlawful; injury and/or damage to persons or property warranting recovery under the Government Claims Act.
Government Code sections 810 and following; unreasonable search and seizure in violation of the Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution; violation of claimants due process rights as guaranteed by the 14th amendment to the United States Constitution; unreasonable search and seizure in violation of California Constitution; violation of claimants due process in violation of California Constitution; conversions under California law; claim and delivery under California law; trespass under California law; petition for an order for restitution for the removed, confiscated and/or destroy property identified in this claim from Mendocino County or its officials, agents or employees as bailee; attorney fees and costs.
What amount of Money are you Seeking to recover?
The amount claimed is more than $2,000. The amount claimed is in excess of $10,000 as it involves a damages amount subject to proof of damages at trial that includes without limitation damages associated with property removed/confiscated/destroyed from the Pinoleville Pomo Indian reservation at 650 Pinoleville Drive including but not limited to the cost of the plants; costs associated with damage to the agricultural infrastructure and materials; labor costs associated with the seized plants; expectation damages related to the medical grade cannabis to be derived from the plants; and receipts and paperwork related to the operation.
Pursuant to government code 910f because the claim is for an amount exceeding $10,000 the amount sought is not to be specified herein. Additionally, the amount of money in damages to be recovered on his claim exceeds $25,000 and therefore this will not be a limited civil case.
A Mendocino County Sheriff's office COMMET receipt regarding the property damaged and/or confiscated from 650 Pinoleville Drive was not provided to the Tribe. All other receipts related to the Tribe's marijuana operation were confiscated during a raid and have not been returned to the Tribe.
What are the names of the county employees whom you allege caused your injury, damage or loss, if known?
Mendocino County, Mendocino County Board of Supervisors, Mendocino County District Attorney David Eyster, Mendocino County Sheriff Thomas Allman, Mendocino Police Sergeant Bruce Smith, Mendocino Sheriff Captain Greg Van Patten, all other agents, officers and employees of Mendocino County who were present at and/or performed work related to the September 22-24, 2015 raid and seizure.
Leona L. Williams, Tribal Chairperson, on behalf of the Pinoleville Pomo Nation, a federally recognized Indian tribe.
CATCH OF THE DAY, April 14, 2016
Bivin, Cauley, Hawkins
CHARLES BIVIN, Ukiah. Criminal threats.
DANIEL CAULEY, Fort Bragg. Fugitive from justice.
CANDICE HAWKINS, Covelo. Paraphernalia, protective order violation.
Lopez, O'Toole, Palacios
ALONA LOPEZ, Ukiah. Burglary, conspiracy.
RYAN O’TOOLE, San Diego/Ukiah. Failure to appear.
JOHN PALACIOS, Ukiah. Under influence.
Pollard, Thompkins, White
JACQUELINE POLLARD, Fort Bragg. Switchblade.
GREGORY THOMPKINS, Fort Bragg. Controlled substance, paraphernalia, failure to appear.
KELLY WHITE, Geyserville/Ukiah. Failure to appear.
THE AFTERMATH OF GLORY
Football & Concussions
by Sheila Dawn Tracy & Bob Lane
Approaching the eighth decade of his life, former pro football player, Will Smith, fits seamlessly into the serene rustic atmosphere of a Mendocino lifestyle.
Tall and fit, humble and soft spoken, Smith was one of the panelists that graced the stage of Trinity Lutheran's community room in Ft. Bragg to honor and celebrate Martin Luther King's Jr.'s birthday on January 18th. Smith subsequently agreed to an interview.
In a relaxed yet resonant voice, he recounted his early days in his hometown of Little Rock, Arkansas, where he was an honor student at Dunbar H.S., an all black school. Smith played football through high school as an offensive guard and middle and corner linebacker. Graduating in 1955, a time when "separate but equal" was the unchallenged philosophy of the Southern educational system, Smith described contact sports as a way to get into the bigger world.
With an interest and skill in both boxing and football, although having won all six of his boxing bouts, Smith opted for an academic scholarship to the University of Michigan and played football from his second year on.
Despite the culture of the 50's when segregation was prevalent and interracial dating presented negative consequences, Smith met and married his wife, Marj, an interracial marriage that withstood the social pressures of that time. Unabashedly crossing unwritten racial codes, Smith was prevented from being in the starting lineup by his Wolverine coaches who instead substituted him after the first completed play. The marriage also stood the test of time, fruitfully bearing the couple three children.
In 1959 Will Smith was drafted by the Chicago Bears but due to racial undertones, left the team before the season started. He was picked up by the Denver Broncos where, hefting an imposing 235 lbs, he played two years as a defensive guard. Problems arose, however, when his coach reneged on an agreement to allow Smith time off in August to be present at the birth of his second child. His opinions of fairness didn't coincide with his coach, Frank Filchuck's and he was traded to the Oakland Raiders. While there, he played the position of offensive guard. He also developed a reputation with management for standing his ground, refusing a contract from his coach, Al Davis. Smith felt that the offer did not equal the pay scale of Smith's white counterparts on the team whose performance and skill level he felt he matched and even surpassed. In hindsight, Smith acknowledged that at 24, he was inexperienced and naive in contract negotiation. He was not picked up in the draft by another team -- a disappointment that kept him away from the game as a spectator for eight years.
He returned to the University of Michigan to get a degree in in psychology, continuing with graduate level courses to become proficient in the emerging practice of conflict resolution.
Smith worked at the U.C. San Diego campus as Dean of Students but returned to Michigan in '63 where he created the first tutorial program in the state for the University of Eastern Michigan. In '67 he was employed by his alma mater as liaison/advisor between students and administration keeping the campus peaceful in a time of increased student activism in protests against the Vietnam war. He worked as a consultant for several government departments in the 70's including the Departments of Labor, Health and Education. His skills as a negotiator were also employed by the military for the Pendleton Air Base Command to help navigate the growing impact of jailed draft dodgers.
Looking back on his four years in professional football, Smith commented that his untimely exit from the game "was a blessing in disguise." As a special teams player, hard physical contact was part of the turf. He witnessed three or four players knocked unconscious every season. The medical protocol at that time was to administer ammonia smelling salts and have a player return to the field. Smith observed that disruptive behavior was considered normal in the male culture of the 60's.
In watching this year's Superbowl in which both Carolina Panthers' player, Corey Brown and Denver Broncos' Shaquille Barrett were knocked unconscious and did not return to the field, an increased level of player safety protocol was evident.
According to Jeff Miller, NFL's Health and Safety Senior Vice President, teams not only rely on the medical opinion of the team's physician but have independent experts on hand as well.
In assessing the future of the game, Smith could not see how it could continue in its current form when increasing knowledge points to long term damaging effects on players after they have retired from the game.
Lisa McHale, wife of Miami Dolphins player, Tom McHale, who passed away at the age of 45, spoke to a Congressional forum on concussions in early March. She said at the time of her husband's death, he was a different person from the man she had married. Personality changes such as the inability to control impulses and rage led to depression and thoughts of suicide. Especially poignant was the fact that until recently, players did not know their multiplying problems were caused by a physical deterioration of the brain and often blamed themselves for their disabilities. She now serves as the Concussion Legacy Foundation's Family Relations Director.
How is football meeting the challenge of growing evidence of harm to its players?
According to NFL spokesperson, Jeff Miller, the league is distancing themselves from their own six year commissioned study (2003-2009) on traumatic brain injury which minimized the effects of repeated concussions on its players. The past efforts of the NFL to discredit the work of Bennett Omalu, the medical examiner who first diagnosed a condition known as CTE (Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy) is the subject of the recent movie, Concussion. The leading role in the movie features the accomplished actor who, coincidentally, shares the same name as our own local luminary, Will Smith.
With additional evidence from the work of Dr. Ann McKee of Boston who found lesions of the brain characteristic of CTE in 90 out of 94 brains studied for repeated concussive trauma, the NFL has worked for four years to have laws passed that require coaches to have concussion training.
In a collective bargaining agreement, the NFL has also allocated a million dollars to player retirement plans. Currently, three hundred players receive disability benefits for neurological disorders such as Parkinson's and Alzheimer's disease.
On the college level, there is more insistence on a higher level of training of coaches in what remains an unregulated profession. Brian Hainline, the chief medical officer of the NCAA (Nat'l Collegiate Athletic Association) noted that only 37% of colleges employ athletic trainers -- a profession that also lacks licensing requirements.
Will Smith discovered the Mendocino coast in 1976 on a camping trip with a psychologist friend from their days at the UC San Diego campus.
His blessing was to be able to experience the power and glory inherent in a career as a professional athlete yet leave the game with a body and mind intact to explore other interests. Freely admitting that football shaped who he is, Smith was not limited by that experience. He continued his work in mediating conflicts and in the late 70's volunteered to write accounts of the local H.S football games for the Mendocino Beacon. A decade later his melodious voice could be heard on several local radio stations, delighting children with tales of adventure and wonder -- an interest he hopes to pursue further.
The ethics a young idealistic Smith fought for in vain in the 60's -- parental leave, equal pay for equal work -- are only now being realized as rights of the workforce.
Another equally powerful ethical question presents itself today in the minds of parents, athletes, coaches, team owners and the NFL leadership:
Can the game that thrills millions of fans with feats of prowess and daring transition from the manly culture that applauds strength, endurance, bravery and competition into a game that is tempered by placing an equal value on a more feminine attribute of compassionate caring?
When the spotlight is gone and fickle media attention shifts to elevate another to superstar status, will these mere mortal men be able to return to their private lives, retaining an ability to live healthy and productive alternate realities?
Sheila Dawn Tracy holds a degree in physical education from Hunter College (CUNY). She lives in Mendocino.
Bob Lane played as fullback in H.S and competed in the H.S. Chicago Championship in 1960. He was a conscientious objector in the Vietnam war and served there as an operating room scrub nurse.
cover art by Joe Kubert
A NEW CHARLES SCHWAB SURVEY says that in order to be considered "wealthy" in the Bay Area, you need a net worth of at least $6 million. A net worth of $1 million is the baseline for being "comfortable."
FEDS TO PROBE MISUSE OF STATE FUNDS FOR JERRY BROWN’S DELTA TUNNELS
by Dan Bacher
The Department of Interior’s Inspector General has opened an investigation into the possible illegal use of millions of dollars by the California Department of Water Resources (DWR) in preparing the Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for Governor Jerry Brown’s controversial Delta Tunnels Plan.
The investigation resulted from a complaint the Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (PEER) filed on the behalf of a Bureau of Reclamation employee on February 19, 2016.
The complaint, made public in a statement from PEER on Monday, April 11, details how a funding agreement with DWR is “illegally siphoning off funds that are supposed to benefit fish and wildlife to a project that will principally benefit irrigators” under the California Water Fix, the newest name for the Delta Tunnels Plan.
The California Water Fix proposes to divert water from the Sacramento River, through two massive tunnels under the Delta, to be exported to corporate agribusiness interests on the west side of the San Joaquin Valley, Southern California water agencies and oil companies conducting fracking and other extreme oil extraction methods.
“California is improperly diverting federal grants to a giant slush fund for the California Water Fix,” stated PEER Senior Counsel Paula Dinerstein, who drafted the complaint. “In this case, the Bureau of Reclamation is abetting the State of California in breaking laws designed to ensure that federal investments to benefit wildlife are not used to their detriment.”
The PEER complaint charges that:
* Those funds, over $60 million, are earmarked for fish habitat improvements under the authority of the Fish and Wildlife Coordination Act. However, they are instead being expended on work that “will harm critical habitat for at least five endangered and threatened fish species. Out of millions spent not a dime went to habitat improvements;”
* The state double-billed for work it supposedly already did with an earlier $50 million grant;
* And the state collected all of the federal funds when the agreement was executed, in violation of a 50/50 matching requirement.
The complaint also notes, “The Bureau of Reclamation also ignored its own rule barring all the federal money from being expended before receiving the non-federal share. Nor has Water Resources indicated when and from what source it will supply its overdue match.”
In a letter dated April 8, 2016, Mary Kendall, Deputy Inspector General for the U.S. Department of Interior responded to the complaint, stating:
“We have carefully reviewed the information you provided to us and gathered additional information about the agreement. Based on this information we have decided to conduct a review into the issues raised in your letter and we expect to commence our work on this matter this month.”
Nancy Vogel, spokesperson for the California Department of Water Resources, said, ”DWR will cooperate fully with the IG (Inspector General) and has no comment beyond that.”
Delta Tunnels opponents welcomed the DOI Inspector General’s investigation of the alleged misuse of funds by DWR.
“We long suspected that federal funds were being illegally diverted into support for the tunnels and finally we’ve got a formal investigation of the matter,” said Bill Jennings, Executive Director of the California Sportfishing Protection Alliance (CSPA), responding to news of the federal investigation. “The California Water Fix with its financing schemes, Enron accounting and the diversion of funds is a tottering house of cards swaying in the wind.”
The Delta Tunnels would not create one single drop of new water. Yet the project would hasten the extinction of Sacramento winter-run Chinook salmon, Central Valley steelhead, Delta and longfin smelt and green sturgeon, as well as imperiling the steelhead and salmon populations of the Trinity and Klamath rivers.
The announcement of the federal investigation of misuse of state funds takes place as the Delta Tunnels Plan is in total chaos. The State Water Resources Control Board announced on March 29 the suspension of upcoming deadlines for the California Water Fix water rights change petition in response to a request by the state and federal water agencies to extend dates and deadlines for the scheduled hearing, along with a number of other requests either to dismiss or delay the petition. (http://www.dailykos.com/story/2016/3/29/1507865/-Breaking-News-State-Water-Board-Suspends-Delta-Tunnels-Deadlines)
Read the PEER letter:
See the Inspector General response:
Look at ongoing IG probe of diversion of Klamath drought relief moneys:
(Dan Bacher can be reached at: Dan Bacher firstname.lastname@example.org.)
ON LINE COMMENT OF THE DAY
There is a certain stark irony in the fact that Korean and Japanese automakers have no problem setting up shop in America, yet so-called American automobile manufacturers prefer to set up shop outside of America. The Koreans and Japanese are more patriotic Americans than are the executive management and shareholders of American automobile manufacturers.
It’s why I will always buy Japanese or Korean-maufactured cars. I currently have two Hondas but my next purchase may be a Hyundai/Kia since they’ve come a long way in quality, style and performance for the price.
Same thing with tires. Cooper makes a great tire and I’ve bought my last couple of sets from them, but they’ve relocated manufacturing to China, so I will most likely no longer patronize them. Many large so-called “American” companies are not really American. They pretend to be by using legacy brand name recognition, but they have no loyalty to America whatsoever.
THE TOP 50 U.S. COMPANIES — like Microsoft, Apple, and Walmart — have allegedly stashed $1.4 trillion in tax havens, notwithstanding the fact that they received trillions of dollars in backing from taxpayers, a report by global poverty charity Oxfam claims. Between 2008 and 2014, those corporations paid $1 trillion in taxes. During the same eight-year period, the companies received the benefit of $11.2 trillion in federal bailouts, loan guarantees, and loans. General Electric, which has received at least $28 billion in support from taxpayers, stashed $119 billion in more than 100 subsidiaries, according to the report. Apple topped the list, though, holding an alleged $181 billion offshore in at least three tax-haven subsidiaries.
EUREKA’S ANTI-PANHANDLING ORDINANCE GOES INTO EFFECT TODAY
WHEN NEWSPAPER DIE & REPORTERS GO BAD
by Peter White
When right wingers go off on NPR and the New York Times for being mouthpieces of the Democratic Party or left wingers criticize Fox News and PBS for having too many conservatives on the air, it makes my head spin. Is there no such thing as truth anymore or not a single honest reporter in town?
No. And we shouldn’t expect there to be. Journalism is one of those bedrock institutions that are critical to a democratic society. Reporters are supposed to inform citizens of things they need to know, to help them navigate the world confidently, effectively, to live well and prosper. Such a noble calling reporters have. From the outside journalism looks like public service. Sometimes it is. But from the inside, the news business is like making sausage or politics. The average person really wouldn’t like to watch how the news is actually made. It’s a pretty dirty and disgusting business even if people like the news product they consume every day.
Reporters are supposed to be fair and thorough but they are often fatuous and sloppy. In order to make their deadlines they take short cuts, make deals, trade information, manipulate gate-keepers, misrepresent themselves, snivel, dissemble and act disingenuously or even dishonestly. Some are quite vindictive and write just enough of the truth to tell a lie or support one. Judith Miller’s shameless reporting about Saddam Hussein’s weapons of mass destruction when he didn’t have any comes to mind. Not exactly the kind of people who follow the golden rule in their work life. But theirs is such a noble calling.
There is a kind of catechism you learn when you go to J-School: get the facts, get the story, get if first, but get it right. That inspiring code of ethics is a load of hooey because in the real world there are a number of factors that limit the unfettered competition for the public’s attention and they have little or nothing to do with the pursuit of truth, journalistic ethics or the craft of reporting. I shall call these limits Journalism’s Ten Commandments. If you break these rules, you will be ostracized and banished from the 4th Estate to an alternate reality called the 5th Estate. In the world of alternative news everything is the same except you don’t get paid for the work you do. If you fall from grace and lose your job with the MSM you can keep reporting but then it’s a hobby. Just when you really need to, you can’t itemize deductions and take off the cost of your cable, telephone, and magazine prescription anymore. The news is such a noble pursuit.
But this is the price you pay for taking too much for granted. It catches up with all reporters eventually. They think they have a divine right to tell the truth. They don’t. They have a platform to tell stories. Hopefully, the stories they tell are good ones bolstered by the facts. But if a reporter gets the facts wrong or if somebody else has a story that is false but more persuasive, then the Greek goddess Nemesis first makes proud and then destroys. As a character type, reporters are notorious for their cocky disrespectful attitudes about sacred things and important people. When they’re not that kind, they are something else: lickspittles for the masters who “make the rules for the wise men and the fools.” That is a Bob Dylan line from “It’s Alright Ma, I’m Only Bleeding”. He wasn’t singing about reporters but he could have been.
Legions of reporters are out of work since newspaper and television news layoffs began about ten years ago. Those people didn’t do anything wrong but they got the shaft anyway. They were good soldiers, loyal to their news organizations, covered their beats, and served the public good. Then the news business changed almost overnight. Ad revenues that supported local print and broadcast news operations declined and like a rising flood the layoffs began to drown the ranks of an entire profession. Most cities could no longer support two newspapers, so many of them merged or simply ceased to exist. According to PaperCuts, a website that tracks the decline of the print media, 166 newspapers in the U.S. died between 2008-2010. More than 30,000 reporters have lost their jobs in the last decade. That is a big deal but not my major talking point here. The financial troubles in the news business are serious but that is not the only crisis reporters are facing.
You work hard and long hours and you’re a reporting machine, a truth seeker who gives comfort to the afflicted and who afflicts the comfortable, but then one day you make a mistake. Even really good reporters like Dan Rather make mistakes. A CBS story Rather reported in 2004 was based on what turned out to be forged documents critical of George W. Bush while his father was running for President. This proved to be Rather’s downfall. The truth is what the editors and owners of news organizations say it is. Not what a reporter or even a famous news anchor says it is. Rather paid the price for being the talking head of his network that could not authenticate the documents the Bush story was based on. This is something they don’t tell you in J-School: don’t let your mouth get bigger than your dick or you’ll have it cut off and stuffed down your throat. Reporting the news is such a noble calling — and quite a wonderful life – until, for whatever reason, it suddenly ends. In Rather’s case, it didn’t. He got a gig with Mark Cuban’s AXS cable channel, so he was lucky. CBS bought a piece of the channel in 2013 so now, ironically, Rather is back working for the same people who hung him out to dry. Go figure.
Those thousands of laid-off reporters are victims of changing times, not their own malfeasance. There are lots of reasons why they are no longer employed: because circulation numbers and TV viewership declined, because ad revenues could no longer support the business side of the news, because the Internet brought ubiquitous news to the masses for free, because people are no longer served by a single primary source of news in their community, because the role of a daily newspaper has been eclipsed by the public’s boutique appetite for news and entertainment selected from a wide menu of choices available via cable, satellite, and the Internet, because a la carte news reflects people’s particular values and interests and not the choices of editors who once decided what is important for people to know, and because newspapers have not been able to generate sufficient revenues from their on line editions to hire enough reporters to cover the news as well as they used to.
In addition to the widespread layoffs and newspaper closings, there is another challenge journalists face that is at once both philosophical as well as profoundly personal. What concerns me here are the knockers, the misfits, and the unreliable sources that must constantly be weeded from the grounds of respectable journalism, like pulling out crab grass in a well-kept lawn. Here are the ten commandments of mainstream journalism that if broken can be career-ending mistakes:
1/ Thou Shall Not Consort With the Enemy: don’t give your sources away to the competition or to law enforcement authorities or anybody not on your team.
2/ Thou Shall Not Get too Close: don’t become part of the story.
3/ Covet your access and protect your sources at least until you publish. Don’t trust anyone who isn’t a trained dispassionate observer of the truth like yourself but take authorities at their word.
4/ Thou Shalt Not be Vulgar in speech or manner of expression when it comes to omnipotent figures and descriptions of their affairs. Use of AP stylebook and proper terms is mandatory.
5/ Thou Shall Work on Sundays because the news cycle is now 24-7. It never stops.
6/ Thou Shall do a good job to support your family but you may rarely see them.
7/ Thou Shall Not Kill does not refer to the competition or the ridicule of hateful people.
8/ Thou Shall Not Freelance except when specifically authorized.
9/ Thou Shall Not Plagiarize but stealing leads and stories is often required.
10/ Thou Shall Fact Check and double-source all allegations of wrong-doing or controversy.
And then there are the unwritten rules, or the Ten Corollaries, as I call them, just as important, but more or less understood by all reporters who have any common sense. Mainstream reporters are members of what Bernie Sanders calls the the media establishment and they need to act like it. They need to internalize the rules of engagement and the limits of what Noam Chomsky once called the “bounds of thinkable thought’. There are certain rules of conduct and ideas to keep in mind that go above and beyond the commandments listed above. Among them are:
1/ Always give two sides to the story even if you can only find one.
2/ Don’t Bite the Hand that Feeds You: if a colleague or the news organization or an advertiser becomes the subject of a news story, do not criticize but defend the company line.
3/ Don’t Call the President a Liar: repeatedly pointing out that politicians lie and that some lie compulsively, risks repeating the news, which by definition, is not news, so don’t do it.
4/ Don’t break a story that will offend your superiors, impugn their political opinions, or undermine their influence with important public figures.
5/ Don’t go beyond the limits of what is locally permitted. For example, if you work sports in St. Louis it is okay to hate the Cincinnati Reds but not the Cardinals.
6/ Don’t go beyond the limits of what is ideologically permitted. For example, you can call the War in Iraq a huge mistake. You cannot call it genocide. That would require an impartial judgment of the actual facts, which is not always, or even mostly, in your job description. You don’t judge, you cover things. If you start uncovering the wrong things, it’s career suicide.
7/ You can violate the tenets of so-called “objective” news reporting whenever you like, as long as you bolster the conventional wisdom, policy choices, and ideological premises of the political establishment in Washington or wherever you work. If you do otherwise, you are painting a big red X on your back. Don’t do that if you know what’s good for you.
8/ Break stories when you can. Follow up on good stories you didn’t break but act like you did.
9/ Practice your deadpan and never appear surprised regardless of what people tell you.
10/ Do not get emotional unless it’s a ploy to get your source to become emotional themselves.
If you violate any of these rules, you will start getting shit assignments and working weekends or nights. If you complain, your work ethic or news judgment will be called into question. This will really piss you off.
The final straw will be when the brass calls you on the carpet and calls you unprofessional and claims your job performance is unsatisfactory. Doesn’t matter that last month you collected an Emmy or some other prestigious award. If you have a union you can file a grievance but they might not stick up for you. Whether this is your first mistake or your last, if you get the boot, you have made your final mistake. Then, it’s time to leave and open up a pizza joint or drive for Uber. If you are very very lucky, you can take your beat on line or find something at one of the Internet news start-ups that will at least help pay the rent.
If any of these things happen to you, your life as you have known it, is pretty much over. One good thing to keep in mind: you are now free of all those confusing rules than didn’t make a whole lot of sense anyway! And you’ll have time to read about Greek mythology.
RAFTING THE EEL: The Mendocino County waterway is a favorite among adventurists who want to ride the rapids.
POEM FOR OLD PEOPLE TO THINK ABOUT AT NIGHT
HIS chosen comrades thought at school
He must grow a famous man;
He thought the same and lived by rule,
All his twenties crammed with toil;
'What then?' sang Plato's ghost. 'What then?'
Everything he wrote was read,
After certain years he won
Sufficient money for his need,
Friends that have been friends indeed;
'What then?' sang Plato's ghost. ' What then?'
All his happier dreams came true –
A small old house, wife, daughter, son,
Grounds where plum and cabbage grew,
poets and Wits about him drew;
'What then?' sang Plato's ghost. 'What then?'
'The work is done,' grown old he thought,
'According to my boyish plan;
Let the fools rage, I swerved in naught,
Something to perfection brought';
But louder sang that ghost, 'What then?'
— William Butler Yeats
WEST COAST SALMON SEASON DATES SET
VANCOUVER, Wa. – The Pacific Fishery Management Council today adopted ocean salmon seasons that provide recreational and commercial opportunities coastwide. The adopted salmon fisheries off the coasts of California, Oregon, and Washington achieve conservation goals for a multitude of individual salmon stocks and provide for freshwater fisheries.
The recommendation will be forwarded to the National Marine Fisheries Service for approval by May 1, 2016.
“It has been difficult for the Council, its advisors, fishery stakeholders and the public to balance fishing opportunities on harvestable Sacramento and Columbia River fall Chinook stocks with the severe conservation needs we are facing with many coho stocks and Sacramento River winter Chinook,” said Acting Council Executive Director Chuck Tracy. “But the Council has recommended commercial and recreational ocean salmon seasons in Washington, Oregon, and California this year that provide important protections for stocks of concern.”
“We have made the tough decisions and implemented fishery restrictions to give salmon stocks their best chance of rebounding from the effects of the drought and El Niño,” said Council Vice-Chair Herb Pollard.
Washington and Northern Oregon (North of Cape Falcon)
Fisheries north of Cape Falcon (near Nehalem in northern Oregon) depend largely on Columbia River Chinook and coho stocks. Columbia River fall Chinook returns are expected to return at high levels, and Columbia River coho are expected to return at reduced but moderate levels in 2016. However, coastal Washington and Puget Sound coho abundance is dramatically reduced from recent years, and some wild coho stocks are expected to return at very low levels. In response, the Council has been challenged with shaping fisheries to provide access to relatively abundant Chinook stocks while protecting natural coho populations.
North of Cape Falcon, there is an overall non-Indian total allowable catch of 70,000 Chinook coastwide (compared to 131,000 last year) and 18,900 marked hatchery coho in the area off the Columbia River (compared to 170,000 last year).
The recreational fishery north of Cape Falcon does not include a mark-selective Chinook season this year, but opens to all salmon on July 1 and ends in late August or when Chinook or coho quotas are reached. Recreational fisheries in all port areas will have access to 35,000 Chinook (compared to over 50,000 Chinook last year), but coho retention is only allowed in ocean areas off the Columbia River with a modest quota of 18,900 (compared to 150,800 last year). For details, please see the season descriptions on the Council website at www.pcouncil.org.
Tribal and non-Indian ocean commercial fisheries are designed to provide harvest opportunity on strong Chinook returns primarily destined for the Columbia River while avoiding coho stocks of concern. Coho retention is prohibited in all commercial fisheries north of Cape Falcon this year.
Non-Indian ocean commercial fisheries north of Cape Falcon include traditional, but reduced, Chinook seasons in the spring (May-June) and summer (July-August), and any coho caught in the commercial fishery must be released. The Chinook quota of 19,100 in the spring is approximately half of the 2015 quota, while the summer season Chinook quota is similar to last year at 23,400 Chinook.
Tribal ocean Chinook fisheries north of Cape Falcon are reduced from 2015 levels with a quota of 40,000 fish (compared to 60,000 last year).
California and Oregon South of Cape Falcon, Oregon
An expected abundance of roughly 300,000 Sacramento River fall Chinook (compared to 650,000 last year), combined with modest coho expectations for the Columbia River, will support recreational and commercial opportunities for ocean salmon fisheries off Oregon and much of California. The 2015 Columbia River coho abundance forecast in 2016 is over 500,000 fish (compared to over 800,000 last year) and will allow for recreational coho opportunities this summer.
The Klamath River fall Chinook abundance forecast for 2016 is substantially lower than recent years and the primary reason for fishery constraints in Oregon and California. Long running drought conditions, coupled with suboptimal ocean conditions, have raised serious concerns for Sacramento River winter Chinook salmon, which are listed as endangered under the Endangered Species Act and have experienced very low survival as juveniles in 2014 and 2015. Fisheries south of Point Arena, California, particularly recreational fisheries in the greater Monterey Bay region, will continue to experience late-season reductions to minimize interactions with winter Chinook.
Recreational fisheries in California and southern Oregon are primarily focused on Chinook salmon and include openings in May, June, July, August, and the Labor Day weekend, in the Brookings/ Crescent City/Eureka area. Fisheries further south all opened on April 2 and will continue through November 13 in the Fort Bragg area, through October 31 in the San Francisco area, through July 15 from Pigeon Point to Point Sur, and through May 31 south of Point Sur.
Recreational fisheries off the central Oregon coast will allow Chinook retention from March 15 through October 31. Coho fisheries consist of a 26,000 mark-selective coho quota fishery in mid-summer from Cape Falcon to the Oregon/California border (compared to 55,000 last year) and a 7,500 non-mark selective coho quota fishery in September, open from Cape Falcon to Humbug Mountain (compared to 12,500 last year).
Commercial fisheries from Cape Falcon to Humbug Mountain, Oregon opened on April 8 and will run through October 31 with intermittent closures to reduce impacts on Klamath fall Chinook. Fisheries in the Humbug Mountain-to-California-border area will be open April 8 through May, with Chinook quota fisheries in June (720) and July (200). Fisheries from the California border to Humboldt South Jetty will open on September 9 with a 1,000 Chinook quota (compared to 3,000 last year).
Between Horse Mountain and Point Arena (in the Fort Bragg area), commercial Chinook salmon fisheries will be open June 13 to 30, August 3 to 27, and September 1 to 30.
In the area from Point Arena to Pigeon Point (San Francisco), the season will be open May 6 to 31, June 13 to 30, August 3 to 28, and during the month of September. From Pigeon Point to the Mexico border (Monterey), the Chinook season will be open in May and June. There will also be a season from Point Reyes to Point San Pedro, open October 3 to 7 and 10 to 14.
The Council developed the management measures after several weeks spent reviewing three season alternatives. The review process included input by Federal and state fishery scientists and fishing industry members; public testimony, and three public hearings in coastal communities. The Council received additional scientific information and took public testimony before taking final action. The decision will be forwarded to the National Marine Fisheries Service for approval and implementation.
In addition, the coastal states will decide on compatible freshwater fishery regulations at their respective Commission hearings.
The Pacific Fishery Management Council is one of eight regional fishery management councils established by the Magnuson Fishery Conservation and Management Act of 1976 for the purpose of managing fisheries 3-200 miles offshore of the United States of America coastline. The Pacific Council recommends management measures for fisheries off the coasts of California, Oregon, and Washington.
On the Web
Pacific Fishery Management Council: http://www.pcouncil.org
Draft Alternative for 2016 salmon management: http://tinyurl.com/salmon2016
Final Alternatives and analyses of the biological and socioeconomic impacts will be posted on the Council web page in the near future.
Description of 2016 salmon management process: http://www.pcouncil.org/salmon/current-season-management/
April 2015 salmon press release, for comparison: http://tinyurl.com/htct6yv
Fact sheet: Salmon: http://www.pcouncil.org/wp-content/uploads/2010/01/Salmon-Oct-2015.pdf
Fact sheet: Common Terms Used in Salmon Management: http://www.pcouncil.org/wp-content/uploads/2010/01/Common-salmon-terms-Oct-2015.pdf