Mendocino County Today: Saturday, March 18, 2017

by AVA News Service, March 18, 2017

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FORT BRAGG NOTES

by Rex Gressett

The Fort Bragg mill site has been sold. That is to say a piece of it has. A contract is signed and the money is in escrow. It is possible, given the accidental, perfunctory, arbitrary and incomplete information that the people of the city and the City Council have been given so far by City Hall, more than one chunk of the property may be in escrow.

How is this subterranean deal related to the precipitous and surprising reversal of city hall policy which now advocates for a return to the very first applications to rezone the mill site made in the distant days of the late Jere Melo?

We were all told that the practical objective of new LCP (local coastal plan) zoning amendment was to make possible piecemeal development of the property. They wanted to do this to help out local folks. This was just the opposite of their stated written policy up to now, which mandated that piecemeal development was to be avoided at all costs.

The council was told that they were being asked to change the rules so that local people could buy sections of the mill site. The council was not told that they were being asked to change the rules because it would benefit someone who already had money on the table, in a discounted deal, and which entity the council itself did not know, and did not know about about until Marie Jones mentioned it in a tangential reference in the closing minutes of the meeting. To appearances, by accident.

When the change in mill site policy from a specific plan to an application for rezoning under an LCP was proposed to the council thirty days ago by the city manager, the City Council appeared to find it an unexpected and welcome opportunity, that since geological ages had passed since anybody did anything, someone was at last suggesting something. It was common sense that some damn thing had to be done. With nothing else on their plate, and apparently no clear ideas of their own about the broad issues of community prosperity that are linked with their decisions about the mill site, they appeared ready to go for a piecemeal development the first moment it was suggested to them.

But in some pretense of propriety they gave direction to the city manager to line it all up for the next meeting. She did, and at the second meeting they were ready to cut the cake, ready to vote for it, right up to the very end of the meeting when Marie Jones, the development director, botched the sale by blurting the truth that a deal was already done, money was in escrow and it suddenly appeared to everyone that the city council was being maneuvered without that essential knowledge into signing the meal ticket for a secret speculator.

OMG.

City Manager, Linda Ruffing, herself seemed momentarily taken aback. Surely she knew, but I think she might not have expected you to know. Possibly, for a second or two, she just lost her nerve. Marie Jones had really terrible timing. There was the glare of an unexpected exposure and a cross glare because of apparently far reaching modifications to accepted ideas. In all that glaring things already looked unsteady. What we thought we had was a plan envisioned over the decades by dozens of public city meetings that we had been told would guide the process from the Fort Bragg side of things.

No one to my recollection had suggested an industrial park.

At that moment of big surprises Monday night, it all just looked too bad. So with the power of her royal prerogative Linda Ruffing pulled the plug on the precipitous vote and suggested briefly that things need not to move so fast. That stopped the whole thing dead in its tracks. Instantly.

It was all reminiscent of the Old Coast Hotel. In that not long ago managerial sleight of hand, emails were released by a city employee who then quit. The e-mails clearly described a behind closed doors gathering of assets, setting up of stooges on the council and contriving to prevent any unseemly interference by public discussion or confusions from the press. The emails also provided insight into the creation of a suddenly weaponized and united public service agency sector — Fort Bragg, Hospitality House, and privatized Mendocino County mental health services.

Who knew?

It became apparent that city hall had not only organized and promoted the Old Coast deal, they had orchestrated their supporters on the council to discount loud public outcry which bleated for at least a minimum of discussion, vote for it on cue, and speak as little as possible. The un-elected sectors of City Hall were running a game, and the council was visibly in on it. There was notification to some councilmen and not to others, with some emails describing finalizing the deal and others building support for it.

That electronic hive of intrigue and surreptitious communications was occurring prior to any public announcement whatsoever.

None of it made anyone mad. It stinks but so what? What made people mad was that after the Old Coast deal was in place, the conspirators too crudely maneuvered the decision past public scrutiny and past the council and past the respected traditions of the council. It was a contemptuous fist in the face for the people of Fort Bragg.

The people got mad.

Now we have another analogous situation. Back-story sleazy, and secret. Front story? No one on the council cares. Or else do not have the experience to effectively care.

So given that the city council has been handed just a tad more information, what does this shiny new city council have to say about this revelation of Planning boss Marie Jones? Did anyone know that a deal was already made?

I decided to ask them straight up if the plan for the mill site was now piecemeal development? Since this is the Internet age I sent them email inquiries. Email gives them a chance to think and also to see the material that we are referencing and our slant on it and for the city, i.e., Ruffing and Jones, to make a reasonable reply.

I will let you know what I get.

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A READER COMMENTS: Marie Jones is the worst kind of developer, the ‘anything for a quick buck’ type, who sees any open space as something to be paved over, built on with god-awful architecture… Taxpayers should be upset too, since taxes paid staff for 15 years of jettisoned planning, including her reports. Good urban planning would encourage the five businesses to develop the property in the existing city, where there are far too many empty commercial buildings now, not plunked down on the mill site. The mill site is the most significant asset in Fort Bragg; Jones is not competent to decide its future. The city council should re-think their support.

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JUDY VALADAO NOTES:

The City of Fort Bragg has no say in who purchases property on the mill site. I believe Marie explained it by saying buyers are getting good deals on the property because no one knows yet what uses will be permitted. Someone may be buying a piece of property for a use that won’t be permitted.

Mayor Peters made it clear that no decisions would be made without public input. Fort Bragg does not own the property but can certainly have a say in the zoning.

It will be interesting to see how it plays out but until then if anyone wants a good deal on property that they may never be able to use now is the time to make that purchase.

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LITTLE DOG SAYS, I like Hunter Pence, but I love Brandon Crawford. He’s right up there with the great Omar V! Maybe even Oz!

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PEKIN & PEKIN of Fort Bragg have been awarded a contract to defend Lake County indigents. Since Lake is mostly indigents, at least for legal purposes, the Pekins are going to be very busy.

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MOVE OVER BOONVILLE. Hopland is running hard to become Mendocino County's second most happening venue. Gary Breem, who owns nearby Campovida, is presently at work on a major rehab of the old Hopland Hotel.

The building permits for architect Richard Ruff says Breem is refurbishing 10 bathrooms. A Hopland persons says, "Since there are 20 rooms I'm guessing he's combining everything into suites." Suites? That's $400 a night, betcha. The thinking must be that wine tourists will pay it. Myself, I remember the Hopland Hotel's beautiful bar, and re-opening it, even as merely a wine and beer bar, is a major gift to Mendocino County's more careful drinkers.

ACROSS THE STREET — on the west side of Highway 101 — a perfect restoration of the former McDowell Winery tasting room, has been perfectly accomplished by Philo Saw Works, aka Jim Boudoures and sons of Philo in Anderson Valley.

It will soon open as Savor and/or The Golden Pig, apparently the creation of Julie Golden. It will offer a full bar along with a ribs restaurant. Here in Boonville, the Live Oak Building, which began life about 1920 as a garage, has been stunningly revived by another talented local contractor, Kirt Morse.

UP THE ROAD, at "far out nearby" Ukiah, as the town slogan has it, no hopeful developments spring to mind, although enthusiasm for the just opened In 'N Out Burger remains undimmed a month after it opened. What does flit across the dim mind screen of this writer is a recent comment by a young woman who said she "hated" Ukiah, which is understandable in a young professional single person far from home and family. Single young people her age in Ukiah are either in rehab or about to be court-ordered into rehab.

BUT UKIAH'S a fine place for anchored people, with lots of stuff for the young ones, but for a young adult, someone fresh out of the bright lights, Ukiah has nothing after the dinner hour, unless that young someone is a solitary, cerebral type who doesn't yearn for the traffic jams, drive-by shootings, free range mental patients, and bad vibes generally characteristic of urban areas, a young person who instead savors the beauty of Mendocino County once persons of all ages get off the main drags of Ukiah and Willits, Mendocino County is a special kind of heaven.

I'M HERE TO SAY, that over the long years, I've come to love Ukiah, maybe because I'm used to it, maybe because it's easy to negotiate, maybe because if the light is just right at the end of a long day I can imagine Ukiah Before The Fall, before its money people gave it up to sprawl, fast food franchises, big box stores, and no there-there generally.

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ON A FLYING VISIT to our County seat Thursday, I wheeled up to the County Admin Center, parking at the first available spot, which a sign said was "Reserved For County Counsel," as if there's a law somewhere that says public property can be set aside for anybody's vehicle, let alone public lawyers. The next door space said "County Official. By Permit Only." The car in it had no permit of any kind. (My old friend Mike Sweeney put it best when he thundered in an oddly East European accent at a court hearing, "There's no statyoot! Show me the statyoot!") Show me the statyoot that says County "officials" can set aside a front door parking spot.

WHEN JOURNALO-HACKS like me visit public buildings we invariably describe them as "bustling." The only time the County Admin is "bustling" is when the weed brigades turn out for a hearing before the supervisors. On a work day Thursday, there was no sign of life on the entire east side of the building, including the County Counsel's office.

ON MY WAY into the building's cold, unwelcoming hallway, I passed two men, one short and about 60 bearing a strong resemblance to Snuffy Smith; the other much younger, tall with hair that looked like a multi-colored Easter egg. The young guy was saying to the older man, "It's all bullshit. Fuck 'em." Seeing me, the young guy, suddenly merry, said, "How ya doin', dude." I was flattered. Usually, it's "How ya doin', old timer?" Or, worse, "How are you, sir?" I wanted to assure the young guy that his "It's all bullshit, fuck 'em" opinion of local government is more widely shared than he may realize.

INSIDE, I walked around trying to catch someone in the act of working. Nope, no one, but to be fair I didn't enter any of the offices, most of which were dark. I wanted mostly to have a look at Jendi Coursey's photographs taken in each of the County's five supervisor's districts. My colleagues said they were very good.

They are, as is, I hear, Ms. Coursey's book on the informal history of Ukiah medicine.

THE ONE SAD thing about Ms. C's photos, is those from District 2, Ukiah's district. The pictures were of the town's civic center building, a re-do of Ukiah's then-grammar school, circa 1915 when people still cared about what their towns looked like. Then there was the County Courthouse from School Street, not from its ghastly front, and finally, poppies coming up from the long abandoned railroad tracks. That was it for District 2. Facades from before World War Two and poppies on tracks that will never again propel trains north and south.

CONTRAST the comparably-sized Healdsburg just a few minutes down the road, a coherent, well-managed small town clearly cherished by the people who live there.

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HUMCO'S SUNDBERG GETS THE NORTHCOAST SEAT

Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. on Thursday announced his appointment of Fifth District Supervisor Ryan Sundberg to the California Coastal Commission.

Established in 1972, the Coastal Commission works in partnership with coastal cities and counties to plan and regulate the use of land and water in the coastal zone. Sundberg will be one of the body’s 12 voting members, four of whom are appointed by the Governor. Six of the voting commissioners are locally elected officials, like Supervisor Sundberg, and six are appointed from the public.

Sundberg will serve as the North Coast Representative, which includes Humboldt, Del Norte and Mendocino counties. His term begins immediately.

“I am honored and humbled to take on this important role for California’s coastline,” Sundberg said. “I look forward to representing the three counties and finding ways to make the Commission more efficient.”

Sundberg began serving as the 5th District Supervisor in 2010. His district includes roughly 40 miles of coastline. Prior to 2010, he served as a member of the Trinidad Rancheria Tribal Council for 14 years while also working in the private sector. Some of his current roles include serving as chair of the Humboldt County Association of Governments, is a member of the Policy Review Committee for the North Coast Resource Partnership, and sits on the Tribal Advisory Committee for the California Association of Counties, among other responsibilities.

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Q: How can you tell if an Irishman has spilled his drink?

A: From the splinters in his tongue.

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GIVEN THIS BACKGROUND: http://theava.com/archives/65329

…We found the following permit applications rather suspicious. Perhaps a reader can explain what Mr. Bewley is up to with these recent proposed changes:

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NORCAL'S MOST EFFECTIVE ATHEIST KEEPS CHURCH AND STATE REALLY, REALLY SEPARATE

To: Kiyo Okazaki <kokazaki@sonoma.lib.ca.us>

Subject: Religious displays in library

I just asked Jennifer Duran at the Rincon Valley Library to remove the overtly religious symbols from a Day of the Dead display which she agreed to do. Ms. Duran characterized the display as an altar which in this case is a christian religious display. Duran told me this type of display is also at other branch libraries. Such promotion of a certain religion is both a federal First Amendment violation as well constituting violations of certain sections of the California Constitution which forbid state government entities from giving preference to or promotion of certain religions. I believe you are constitutionally obligated to remove these religious endorsements from throughout the library system, both the overtly christian and the altars.

Irv Sutley, Glen Ellen

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Hello Mr. Sutley,

Thank you for writing.

I would like to speak with you… perhaps tomorrow since I am on my way to a meeting in Healdsburg this afternoon.

May I have your phone number? Or if you prefer, please call me tomorrow before 10:30 a.m. or after 2 p.m.

Thank you so much!

Kiyo Okazaki

Public Services Division Manager

Sonoma County Library

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To: Kiyo Okazaki <kokazaki@sonoma.lib.ca.us>

Subject: Re: Religious displays and programs in Sonoma County, CA public libraries

I was away doing auto repairs yesterday. I do not have a cell phone and you did not include a work phone number where you could be reached. The altar is still in place today at the Rincon Valley library. I am also concerned that the Coddingtown branch may again present a December program of christian music which was blasted throughout that library in earlier years where patrons were subjected to this religious bigotry. Please advise me of what steps you are taking to end these government sponsored religious programs and displays at our public libraries in Sonoma County.

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To: Irv Sutley

Subject: Our phone meeting

Good morning. I am so sorry I did not include my phone number in my message. I am also sorry that I was in the workshop all day on Friday, and did not get back to you sooner. Please call me at 707-545-0831 ex.1536. I am in-and-out quite a bit today, but should be here between 4:30 and 5:45. Or if you have a number where I can reach you, please do so, and I will try to catch you today. Thank you so much!

Kiyo Okazaki

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Subject: Re: Our conversation

Kiyo Okazaki,

I think we need to continue this conversation by email rather than phone. I would like to know what the library system is going to do to stop promoting and sponsoring religious displays, religious programing, and religious messages. These do not belong in a public institution, a government entity paid for with tax dollars. Also I would like to know when the Library Board of Directors meets, as well as where, what times, etc.

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Subject: FW: Please review - response to 'ofrenda' objection

Mr. Sutley,

Thank you for sharing your concerns with us.

I have taken necessary measures regarding your concerns.

As for your question regarding the Northwest Branch, they do not have any holiday music events planned in December.

Sonoma County Library Commission meets on the first Monday evening of each month at 6:30 p.m. at the Santa Rosa City Council Chambers, 100 Santa Rosa Avenue, Santa Rosa, CA 95404.

The November meeting will be held on November 14 (2nd Monday) at 6:30 p.m.

Thank you,

Kiyo Okazaki

Public Services Division Manager

707-545-0831 ex, 1536

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To: Kiyo Okazaki <kokazaki@sonoma.lib.ca.us>

Subject: Another religious display in branch library

This past Saturday, while I was in the Coddingtown branch library, I noted a poster on the wall promoting a children's book about a christian saint and his mythological relationship with animals. I gave my objection to the branch library manager but the poster was not taken down. This is the same branch where I was earlier subjected to religious songs and this poster is similar to the religious altar displayed recently at the Rincon Valley branch. These christian displays violate the separation of state and church and the pertinent sections of the California constitution which forbids this type of bias in favor of a particular religious cult.

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Subject:

RE: Another religious display in branch library

Mr. Sutley,

I am sorry for the delay in responding to your message below. Thank you for sharing your concerns with us. I have taken necessary measures regarding your concerns re: the poster advertising the book: Song of Francis and the animals by Pat Mora published by Eerdmans Publishing at the Northwest Branch.

Thank you, kiyo

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Subject: Re: Another religious display in branch library

Dear Ms. Okazaki,

What are the "necessary measures" you took regarding the christian advertising poster plugging the Mora book, "Song of Francis and the animals”?

I ask that this question be considered a California Public Records Act request.

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ON FRIDAY, MARCH 17 at about 3:50pm truck driver C. Hammack, 48, of Willits, was driving an older model Peterbilt semi with two trailers south on Hwy 101 just north of Center Street in Hopland at about 25-30mph when for no known reason he made an unsafe turn to the east (left) and ran into the Hopland Tap House building at 13351 Hwy 121. Hammack was transported to Ukiah Valley Medical Center and then to Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital for treatment of moderate injuries. (No description or estimate of the damage provided.) Hammack was not arrested.

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POINT CABRILLO!

Stop by Point Cabrillo for a tour of our original 1908 Fresnel lens. There are only four functioning Fresnel lenses in the State of California and Pt Cabrillo is one of them. The others are at Point Bonita, Point Vicente and Point Pinos. These tours are only done 8 days each year and this Saturday and Sunday from 10-4PM are days 3 and 4. Plus check out the Grey Whales passing by heading North.

Please help keep this jewel of the coast alive!!

Stuart Cohen

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KZYX IS IN REAL TROUBLE WITH TRUMP

Letter to the Editor

On Thursday, March 16, in a front page article in the New York Times, it was announced that the budget submitted by President Trump cuts all funding for the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), the National Endowment for Humanities (NEH) and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB).

Regarding the CPB, Trump hates public media. Rightly or wrongly, Trump equates public media with liberal media. Here in Mendocino County, our public radio station, KZYX, has a far left-of-center bias. In 27-years since its founding, KZYX has never diversified to include moderate, much less conservative, voices, even while purporting to be "public" radio.

Now that bias will come back to haunt us. I'll explain. It's all about funding.

Over last 27 years, KZYX has received $4-5 million from the CPB. Keep in mind, CPB funding is the "mother's milk" of all public media, especially small rural stations, like KZYX. Without CPB's big fat check coming every year, we at KZYX would have failed in any given year.

So what now? What is KZYX's contingency plan?

Well, it doesn't have one.

KZYX's only hope going into the future will be grants -- corporate and foundation grants. That kind of funding. No more annual federal handouts from the CPB.

But there's a major problem. KZYX won't get corporate and foundation grants. And certainly not fot for operations. It just won't. Why? For the simple reason that KZYX's business practices are so far out of compliance,

KZYX will never get money from the private sector. Accounting and audit, in particular, are dismal at KZYX, and corporate and foundation grant makers are sticklers for well-managed applicants.

I repeat: Our accounting and audit are dismal. I should know. I served on KZYX's Board of Director from 2013 to 2016, and was Board Treasurer in 2014. I also hosted a popular show, "The Truth About Money" on KZYX for six years. (The show is now called "All About Money", and it is broadcast every Monday at 1 pm on KMEC.)

I cite just one example of KZYX's dismal accounting and audit -- the station's IRS Form 990s. In the three years that I was on the KZYX Board, I, along with the rest of the Board, never once saw the station's 990s before they were filed. It gets worse.

At KZYX's last Board meeting, on March 6 in Fort Bragg, investigative journalist, Scott Peterson, did a flip chart presentation that showed that KZYX's Form 990s are defective, if not fraudulent, as filed.

Indeed, Mr. Peterson demonstrated that much, if not all, of the station's accounting and audit is incomplete, inaccurate, and inconsistent. Nothing adds up, and if it does, it adds up to a failing station.

Don't think public radio stations can fail? Well, they do! Close to home, KUSP in Santa Cruz failed. KUSP was much bigger than KZYX. And Santa Cruz is a liberal university town with a lot of support for public media. But guess what? KUSP failed anyway. In fact, KUSP's very own IRS Form 990s were the "canary in the mine" that should have given its own Board of Directors an early warning of a failing station -- but they were ignored by KUSP's Board.

Sounds a lot like KZYX.

Corporations and foundations will KZYX only if our financials are impeccable, which they are not. Our financials are inaccurate, incomplete, and inconsistent, as Scott Peterson demonstrated. Additionally, at KZYX there are no multi-year reviews of operating statements, balance sheets, and cash flow statements. And debt is never disclosed -- what we owe NPR, the CA Department of Forestry, American Radio International, and Pacifica? What we owe on our letter of credit at the Mendocino Savings Bank is not disclosed?

And what do our correct Form 990s look llike? It's shocking, but KZYX's IRS Form 990s were filed without the KZYX Board ever having seen them.

Also, corporations and foundations will only fund KZYX if our policies are strictly followed. Currently, our policies are not even posted on our website. This is also shocking.

As someone who is a trained trustee and fiduciary, and as someone who is a trained Board director, and as someone who has years of accounting, audit, and management experience, I'm here to tell you that KZYX will fail, and I'm here to help. I want to help KZYX save itself from itself. It's why I'm running for the KZYX Board.

I will fight for best business practices at KZYX, so we can open up new revenue streams from corporations and foundations. But first, I will insist on best business practices for accounting, audit, and management. I will refile defective Form 990s, and will restate the station's other financials.

I promise to work with KZYX's GM and put a premium on collegiality with other Board directors. But I will not wink at "business as usual" as our beloved community radio station goes out of business, and the airwaves become silent -- not as Trump remakes the United States of America in his own image and likeness.

John Sakowicz

KZYX Board candidate

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AT EASE, KZYX. Bush also tried to wipe out CBC every year in his proposed budgets, all eight of them, but widespread bipartisan support for audio conservatism spared funding. A lot of Trumpian funding cruelty won't survive the budget process. Anyway, have you ever heard a single thing on NPR that might disturb the fascisti? NPR is hardly Democracy Now.

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JACKPOT

Dear Friends,

My latest article is about people who steal from nonprofits, how they do it, and how it can be prevented. It also shows how bad policies can travel from one nonprofit to the next with terrible consequences: https://drive.google.com/file/d/0Bxf2TM2uxGxFZ2E5TmY3bzZWRDA/view?usp=sharing

Cheers,

Scott M. Peterson

Mendocino

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SAKO & A CPA

Al Weaver wrote on the MCN Listserve regarding John Sakowicz’s candidate statements for the KZYX at large board seat:

Isn't this the same guy that incessantly bashed KZYX a while back? And then promoted the station (KMUD) he then supported? Now he is actually trying to appeal to the m'ship... as a true politician. This is the Sacko we remember. I think all his claimed bona fides are not the issue, here outside of Wall Street, where he claims his expertise. If, again, IF, he has a point regarding financial matters, the Board could hire a CPA to run the station's books, which is a common practice for local non-profits. It may be a cost, but a valid one, and way far better, than to see him on the Board.

-Al Weaver

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Marco McClean replied:

Al, here's an article that might interest you. It one of several in Scott Peterson's series on local so-called nonprofit organizations, and it touches on Mendocino County Public Broadcasting (KZYX) briefly, beginning on page 13 of 16.

https://drive.google.com/file/d/0Bxf2TM2uxGxFZ2E5TmY3bzZWRDA/view

Here's another one-- not necessarily for you, and I'm not putting it here to make any kind of a point; I just think it's interesting: http://reason.com/blog/2017/03/01/moral-outrage-is-self-serving

In other news, radio aficionados, I'm at Juanita's this week to read my show by live remote from the typing table next to the bed. So if you were thinking of coming to the station in Fort Bragg and playing your button accordion or talking about your project, or whatever, plan on next Friday night, the 24th. It's 325 N. Franklin, next to the Tip Top bar. Stop by any time between 9pm and, oh, 2 or 3am, walk right in, head for the lighted room at the back and get my attention. I'll leave a microphone on for you.

Memo of the Air: Good Night Radio is 9pm to 4am every Friday night on 107.7fm KNYO Fort Bragg, including midnight to 3am 105.1fm KMEC Ukiah. Or listen via http://KNYO.org or TuneIn.com (and search for KNYO-LP).

Each MOTA recording is always available through http://MemoOfTheAir.wordpress.com by the next night. You can stream the recording or download and keep it and play it in your car or on your teevee or your phone or even on the microwave oven. We're truly living in an age of miracle and wonder. And the very POTUS is an actual baby with a baboon's heart! So.

p.s. If you want to do a radio show of your own devising and responsibility, email Bob Young bobb@poetworld.net and say so. He'll show you how to use the equipment and go over the schedule with you and there you are. That's how it is at a real community radio station. Try it. It's easy and fun.

Marco McClean

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IT'S GETTING ROUGHER OUT THERE

The Ukiah Police Department is requesting the public’s help in identifying a woman who reportedly assaulted a Walmart employee while stealing baby-related items from the store.

According to the UPD, officers responded to the store on Airport Park Boulevard around 1:30 p.m. March 3 when it was reported that a woman had assaulted staff while shoplifting.

An employee of the store told officers that the woman was seen in the “infant department taking multiple items off the shelf and stuffing these items into a black bag.”

The witness then followed the suspect to the main entrance of the store and approached her after she left the business without paying for the items in her bag. When the employee reported being tasked with Loss Prevention, the suspect tried to leave.

When the employee then grabbed the bag, the two began to fight over the bag and the suspect reportedly kicked the employee twice in the side. The suspect escaped with the items and the employee was not injured.

The UPD describes the suspect as a white female wearing blue jeans and a gray shirt with orange/red stripes on the sleeves. In a photo taken by surveillance cameras, the suspect appears to be wearing glasses and have reddish-blonde hair.

Anyone with information about this incident is asked to contact the UPD at 707-463-6262.

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CATCH OF THE DAY, March 17, 2017

Ashline, Barton, Kavanaugh

JEFFREY ASHLINE, Ukiah. Burglary, possession of burglary tools, vandalism.

JULIE BARTON, Kentfield/Ukiah. Under influence, controlled substance.

PETE KAVANAUGH, Hopland/Ukiah. Controlled substance, county parole violation.

Kekoup, Lozano, O'Donnell, Stevenson

CHRISTOPHER LELOUP, Ukiah. Probation revocation.

ALEXANDRIA LOZANO, Eureka/Laytonville. Under influence.

ERICK ODONNELL, Ukiah. Drunk in public.

STEVEN STEVENSON, Laytonville. Probation revocation.

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ROAMING CHARGES: MY BRAIN IS HANGING UPSIDE DOWN

by Jeffrey St. Clair

+ Rachel Maddow’s big exposé on Trump’s taxes turned into a big bust: Trump made $153 million and paid $38 million in taxes. The surprise is that Trump actually paid taxes in 2005, choosing not to avail himself of the $20 billion loss claimed in previous years. In order to cover the flop, Maddow and Co. suggested without the slightest evidence that Trump leaked the returns himself!

+ Maddow claims the protection of 1st amendment for publishing Trump’s leaked/stolen tax returns. Fine. But she should apply the same standard to the DNC/Podesta emails, which she and the rest of the MSDNC crew continue to refer to as “stolen.”

+ Perhaps Maddow was simply preparing her cultish audience for the even bigger bust to come: the Russian Connection. The longer the Democrats, and their talking puppets in the press, remain fixated on the the meta-conspiracy of Russian hacking of the 2016 elections the more cover they give Trump to loot the economy, eviscerate social welfare programs and gut environmental regulations. Trump is going to subvert the country through unbridled greed and avarice, not through a seditious pact with Putin. Maybe it can all be explained as a massive case of PMS–Putin Mania Syndrome.

+ At the end of last week, Trump canned 46 US attorneys, the nation’s top prosecutors. The mass dismissal was entirely his prerogative and is common practice in new presidential administrations. Who weeps for prosecutors? Liberals, apparently, who have made Preet Bharara, the former US attorney for the southern district of Manhattan, into a martyr. Bharara is now being cast as a white knight who was waging mighty battles against the crooks of Wall Street. It’s a ludicrous portrait for anyone who knows anything about Bharara’s less than glorious tenure as US attorney. As Pam and Russ Martens report, Bharara is a creature of Wall Street. In fact, he has largely functioned as a factotum for the Senator from Citibank, Chuck Schumer. Bharara served faithfully for several years as the chief counsel for Schumer on the Senate judiciary. As a reward for his dutiful role in protecting the careers of ace financial predators such as Jamie Dimon and Lloyd Blankfein, Schumer persuaded Barack Obama to appoint Bharara to his post as US attorney in the spring of 2009, during the depths of the economic crisis that Wall Street engineered. One of the biggest cases in Bharara’s tenure was the investigation into the Bernie Madoff ponzi scheme, where Bharara’s role seemed to be to protect the felonious fund’s biggest beneficiaries, JPMorgan Chase and Picower Family, who reportedly made a profit of nearly $20 billion from the Madoff fund. Clearly a hero for our time.

+ If you’re not a banker, you’re their prey

+ No sign of any trillion dollar infrastructure plan in Trump’s budget. In fact, funding for the Department of Transportation shrinks. Perhaps Trump will set up a Go Fund My Infrastructure website?

+ David Be’eri, an Israeli settlement leader who once ran over Palestinian kids with his car, just won the Israel Prize for lifetime achievement.

+ Trump’s counter-terror advisor, the brutish Sebastian Gorka, was apparently an active member of a far-right Hungarian order known as Vitézi Rend. As reported in Forward, the US State Department Vitézi Rend operated under the direction of the German Nazi regime in World War II. Leaders of Vitézi Rend to Forward that Gorka had pledged “lifelong loyalty” to the order, a vow that may place Gorka’s immigration status in jeopardy. The State Department’s Foreign Affairs Manual states that members of the Vitézi Rend “are presumed to be inadmissible” to the country under the Immigration and Nationality Act. No wonder the Trump White House is desperate to chop the State Department by 30 percent.

+ Just call her Never-Never Nikki. This week UN Ambassador Nikki Haley, in full damage-control mode, announced that “Russia should never be trusted.” Even Ronald Reagan, the ideological sperm donor for this whole crew, said “trust but verify.”

+ Royal Robbins, who pioneered low-impact climbing on the vertical faces of Yosemite, died this week. I spent a day in Kings Canyon with Robbins in the early 90s. He was one of the greatest climbers and conservationists of our time.

+ Trump made a morbid pilgrimage to Hermitage to lay flowers on the tomb of Andrew Jackson, slave-owner and Indian killer. Trump’s hero once penned an advertisement for a runaway slave which offered $50 for the capture of the slave “and ten dollars extra, for every hundred lashes any person will give him.” I had a flashback to Reagan’s creepy visit to graves of the Waffen SS in Bitburg, an homage immortalized by The Ramones.

+ The most edifying takeaway from Trump’s big interview with Tucker Carlson on FoxNews this week concerned his reading habits, which weigh-in at about half-a-Palin. Of course, he’d read a little more, if he didn’t have to spend all day making America tremendously great again:

Tucker Carlson: What do you do at the end of the day? What do you read, what do you watch…

Donald Trump: Well, you know, I love to read. Actually, I’m looking at a book, I’m reading a book, I’m trying to get started. Every time I do about half a page, I get a phone call that there’s some emergency, this or that. But we’re going to see the home of Andrew Jackson today in Tennessee and I’m reading a book on Andrew Jackson. I love to read. I don’t get to read very much, Tucker, because I’m working very hard on lots of different things, including getting costs down. The costs of managing our country are out of control. But we have a lot of great things happening, we have a lot of tremendous things happening.

+ A powerful new study by the UN’s Office of Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia confirms and documents the apartheid-like treatment of Palestinians by Israel. Predictably, this report was met with rage by Israel and its allies in the UN (the US). Pressure was applied and a few days later the UN Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres, demanded that the report be removed from OESCWA’s website. Rather than comply with Guterres’s demand, Rima Khalif, the Executive Secretary of the OESCWA, tendered her resignation. There are still things that are true that you can’t say in public without paying an extreme price.

+ Trump: “I’ve always opposed the Iraq war.” On March 15th, the Pentagon announced it’s plans to send 2,500 new to Kuwait to await their deployment to Syria and Iraq.

+ What fascists talk about when they go to the beach:

“In October 1938, while on holiday at the beach, Claretta recorded that he told her how much he detested the Jews and that he planned to ‘massacre them like the Turks did’. ‘I have imprisoned 70,000 Arabs in concentration camps. I can do the same with 50,000 Jews. I’ll put them on a small island and shut them all up there … I shall kill them, every one.’ He insisted to Claretta that he was disgusted to think he had ever slept with the Jewish Sarfatti, speaking of the ‘stench of her flesh’. He also expressed a wish to wipe out the ‘four million’ Italians who, according to his calculations, had descended from Roman slaves and whose blood must therefore have remained vile for ‘fifty generations’. The English, he told her, were even worse: a ‘piggish and fallen people’ who thought with their bottoms and whose institutions were riddled with Jews. As for the French, with the exception of Napoleon, every last one of them was cowardly, syphilitic and degenerate; French women were whores who only enjoyed sleeping with black men – something Claretta concurred was ‘awful’.” (From “Il Duce and the Red Alfa” by Bee Wilson, London Review of Books.)

+ Laila al-Arian has produced a terrific new documentary on the implications of Trump’s Muslim ban, called simply “The Ban.”https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lqJVlv-kR8U

+ The West Virginia senate just passed a bill that eliminates coal mine safety inspections. Why? It’s all about the workers!

+ The first condemnation notices are being sent to Texas landowners to clear the way for Trump’s Great Wall. The landowners are being offered a whopping $2,000 an acre. So much for the sacred nature of property rights.

+ For the past two years, carbon dioxide rates in the atmosphere have risen by more than 3 parts per million, the fastest increase ever recorded. Thank Gaia that now learned from Scott Pruitt that the stuff is harmless….Inhale, if the wind’s blowing right you might even cop a buzz! (Of course, if Jefferson Beauregard Sessions finds out carbon dioxide makes you high, he might try to ban it–or arrest you for breathing.)

+ Here is a map of global sea ice. This year’s line is in red and it’s almost off the chart, in a negative kind of way. Over to you Scott Pruitt!

+ Yemen is on the brink of a deadly famine. Meanwhile, the US and the Saudis continue bombing and blocking the disbursement of food and medical aid.

+ Trump on Letterman, Jan. 2015:

“A friend of mine was in Scotland recently. He got very, very sick. They took him by ambulance and he was there for four days. He was really in trouble, and they released him and he said, ‘Where do I pay?’ And they said, ‘There’s no charge.’ Not only that, he said it was like great doctors, great care. I mean we could have a great system in this country.”

Someone should retool Single-Payer, call it TrumpCare and send it to Trump. Flattery sells.

+ The Trump administration just gave the CIA expanded authority to conduct killer drone strikes against insurgents and suspected terrorists (and anyone in the vicinity). So much for that feud with the Deep State.

+ California’s only extant wolf pack has gone missing. None of the seven wolves in the Shasta Pack have been seen since last spring. Have they checked the walls on Uday and Qusay Trump’s trophy room?

+ Rexxon Tillerson ventured to Asia this week, without the press corps, threatened military action against a nuclear power (North Korea), then cut his trip short, citing “fatigue.” Perhaps he should consult “low-energy Jeb!” for advice on how to deal with these incapacitating feelings of ennui..

+ We-Vibe, a Canadian vibrator manufacturer, has just been fined $4 million Canadian dollars for tracking the sexual activity of their customers without their knowledge. No word on whether Kellyanne Conway conducted a sweep of the White House after Justine Trudeau’s visit….

+ Anarchists are fixing Portland’s battered roads, Block by Black Bloc…

+ Dr. Joey Hensley is bigoted Tennessee state legislator who has built his political career by attacking the LGBT community. Now courtesy of court records from his divorce we learn that Dr. Hensley has been carrying on an affair over the course of several years with his nurse, who also happens to be his cousin. Hensley also served as his lover’s doctor and prescribed her a steady diet of prescription drugs. Hensley, who was the chief sponsor of the “Don’t Say Gay Bill“, refused to testify at the divorce trial claiming “doctor-patient privilege.” Shortly before this story broke, Hensley had introduced a bill in the Tennessee Senate that would deem babies born through artificial insemination “illegitimate.” Dr. Hensley is, of course, a self-described “family values Republican.”

+ Speaking of family values Republicans, another one took a break from hectoring his constituents on the wages of sin to get himself arrested for having sex with a teenage boy prostitute in a Super 8 Motel in Moore, Oklahoma. Perhaps Trump should start a national crime blotter for such acts of hypocritical venality so America can keep track. It would prove much more entertaining than charting crimes made by poor immigrants.

+ When ExxonMobile executives conducted contentious internal debates on sensitive topics such as climate change, Exxon chieftain Rex Tillerson adopted a fake email name, Wayne Tracker. It’s not clear yet whether Tillerson had any communications with “John Miller” or “Carlos Danger.”

+ The fiercely independent historian Marylin Young died this week. I was very sorry to hear this. I spoke on a panel with Marilyn shortly after 9/11. Everything she predicted then has come true and more so.

+ The return of John Coltrane and James Baldwin in the same year? Maybe Trump is making America great again!

+ My old pal Steve Kelly, the Bozeman artist and environmentalist, made this stirring video on behalf of Yellowstone’s bison, who are being ruthlessly rounded up and killed as they migrate across the park’s boundaries. Watch and then act.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M4zTH9I5VHs

+ The great poet of the Caribbean Derek Walcott has died. Here’s a favorite passage from his great poem “Another Life, Fully Annotated”

The sun drumming, drumming,

Past the defeated pennons of the palms,

Roads limp from sunstroke,

Past green flutes of the grass

The ocean cannonading, come!

Wonder that opened like the fan

Of the dividing fronds

On some noon-struck sahara,

Where my heart from its rib cage yelped like a pup

After clouds of sanderlings rustily wheeling

The world on its ancient,

Invisible axis,

The breakers slow-dolphining over more breakers,

To swivel our easels down, as firm

As conquerors who had discovered home.

* * *

Sound Grammar

What I’m listening to this week….

Freedom Highway: Rhiannon Giddens

Change My Game: Thorbjørn Risager & the Black Tornado

Reverence: Nathan East

Love Has Come Around: Donald Byrd and 125th St., N.Y.C.

Man vs. Sofa: Sherwood & Pinch

Booked Up

What I’m reading this week…

The Language of the Third Reich by Victor Klemperer

Hitler’s American Model: the United States and the Making of Nazi Race Laws by James Q. Whitman

Hard Rain Falling by Don Carpenter

Dictatorship of Lies

Hannah Arendt: “The moment we no longer have a free press, anything can happen. What makes it possible for a totalitarian or any other dictatorship to rule is that people are not informed; how can you have an opinion if you are not informed? If everybody always lies to you, the consequence is not that you believe the lies, but rather that nobody believes anything any longer. This is because lies, by their very nature, have to be changed, and a lying government has constantly to rewrite its own history. On the receiving end you get not only one lie—a lie which you could go on for the rest of your days—but you get a great number of lies, depending on how the political wind blows. And a people that no longer can believe anything cannot make up its mind. It is deprived not only of its capacity to act but also of its capacity to think and to judge. And with such a people you can then do what you please.”

(Jeffrey St. Clair is editor of CounterPunch. His new book is Bernie and the Sandernistas: Field Notes From a Failed Revolution. He can be reached at: sitka@comcast.net or on Twitter @JSCCounterPunch. Courtesy, CounterPunch.org.)

* * *

A BAD WEEK AND GETTING BADDER BIGLY FAST

by James Kunstler

Well, of course they bugged Trump Tower. Why wouldn’t they? Trump’s big blunder du jour is that he tweeted “wiretapped,” like some hapless sap out of a 1950s I Was a Spy for the FBI movie. (I know people who still say “ice box,” too.) So he left himself — or rather poor Sean Spicer — open for a week of legalistic pettifogging by reporters acting as litigators for the Deep State’s intel corps.

Anyway, Wikileaks “Vault 7” document release earlier in the month made it clear that US intel has the ability to cover and confuse the tracks of any entity —including especially US intel itself — that ventures to penetrate any supposedly private or secure realm. And, by the way, that probably settles the matter of who “they” are. Whatever statutory restraints once existed against CIA spying on American citizens is long gone by the boards.

You might suppose, too, that the combined forces of Hillary and Obama, along with the still-entrenched Democratic establishment, would have tried through late 2016 to stop The Menace of Trump at all costs. Somebody had done them dirty in funneling the DNC and Podesta emails to Wikileaks, and it was imperative to fight back — especially with FBI director James Comey (a Republican, after all), going all rogue on Mrs. Clinton. Hence, the manufactured Russia-did-it story that has gotten more mileage than any political hallucination since Senator Joe McCarthy, at his height of influence, played the newspapers like a whole orchestra of flugelhorns.

It’s hard to see how Trump might ever establish the truth of this matter. One of the strange features of these internecine wars is that the Department of Justice — as far as we know — isn’t deposing scores of operations people from the myriad agencies under the NSA umbrella to establish who’s been doing what. Anyway, there’s enough loose scuttlebutt around Washington that Trump might have a pretty good idea of who at the various agencies hates his guts, and is working against him, and one wonders why he doesn’t just fire a bunch of them. Perhaps that’s yet to come.

But it also looks a bit as though the Golden Golem of Re-Greatification has wandered into a political minefield so dense with booby traps that he’s already out of moves. First there’s the debt ceiling problem — which has so far received almost no attention from the Kardashianized collective news media. As David Stockman has pointed out on his blog, the US Treasury amassed a “war chest” of nearly half a trillion dollars last fall (via various book-keeping shenanigans) in expectation that President Hillary would need it to ride out some fiscal bad weather early in her reign.

Then, the truly inconceivable happened and Hillary won bigly in the wrong states and not bigly enough in the right ones, and, well…. Immediately, with Trump ascendant, the Treasury and its handmaidens at the Federal Reserve engineered a rapid burn-through of the war chest at a rate of about $90-billion a month since November, so that now there remains only about a month’s worth of walking-around money to run the US Government. With the old debt ceiling truce expired, congress would have to resolve to raise it, to legally enable the Treasury to resume its massive borrowing operations, or else the government won’t be able to pay invoices or issue pension checks or meet any obligations. It could even default on its “no risk” bonds.

Those dangers are theoretical for the moment, especially since there is always more accounting fraud to resort to when all else fails. But the longer a debt ceiling stalemate goes on in congress, the more trapped President Trump will be. The cherry on top is the Federal Reserve’s move to raise interest rates the same day the debt ceiling truce expired. That will thunder through the system, making many loans more expensive to repay, dampening the real estate markets (at a time when commercial real estate is already tanking), and draining all kinds of other mojo (however falsely engineered) from the Potemkin economy.

As if being trapped in a political minefield isn’t bad enough, the remaining safe patch Trump is stranded on turns out to be the LaBrea Tar Pit of health care reform. At this point, the crusade is doing worse than going nowhere — it’s getting sucked into the primordial bitumen where the mastodons and camelops sleep.

(Support Kunstler’s writing by visiting his Patreon Page: https://www.patreon.com/JamesHowardKunstler)

* * *

ON LINE COMMENT OF THE DAY

When this continual Stock Market rise truns into a bloodbath and companies stop completely, and it will, does anyone actually expect The Donald to raise a calming hand and stop the panicked race to get the hell to some kind of safety? Does anyone expect a compassionate intervention to put people back to work again?

If the US ‘strikes’ N Korea, which sounds like it might just do, will anyone trust that The Donald actually knows what he is doing when the unintended consequences speed out of control?

When will Sean Spicer quit? My God, the latest news briefings are now so full of disrespect on both sides they might as well stop doing them. This is beyond a reset fix. Trust and respect has gone, and the smell works its way upwards; all the way to Trump.

I think a nasty time of protest and violence could break out at any time as this continues to unravel. It won’t take much to light the fuse.

* * *

YES! An Oregon man is circulating a petition demanding that if Congress is willing to repeal the Affordable Care Act, its members should also be willing to forego their own health care subsidies. On Thursday afternoon, the Change.org petition had received more than 432,000 signatures, with a goal of 500,000 before it will be sent off to congressional leadership. The Trumpers plan to repeal and replace the health care law could leave 24 million people without health insurance, according to an estimate by the Congressional Budget Office.

* * *

ELIMINATE MEDICAL CARE, STARVE THE ELDERLY. At a news conference Thursday, Mick Mulvaney, President Donald Trump's budget chief, defended proposed cuts to the Meals on Wheels program, which provides food aid to needy senior citizens, by saying the program is one of many that is "just not showing any results." Meals on Wheels is a nonprofit group that receives funding from the federal government, state and local governments and private donors. "We serve more than 2.4 million seniors from 60 to 100+ years old each year," the organization writes. "They are primarily older than 60 and because of physical limitations or financial reasons, have difficulty shopping for or preparing meals for themselves."

* * *

JOB-KILLING LYIN’ KING PRESIDENT

by Tom H. Hastings

Impeach.

Trump’s budget is out, his Trumpcare bill is introduced, and between them they are astonishingly stupid and promise-breaking. Featured are just a small sample of these job-killing aspects:

The American Healthcare Act (Trumpcare), if enacted, will eliminate 23,000 jobs just in my state, Oregon. The national implications are horrific, in job loss and in healthcare loss—as well as sharp increases in premiums for at least the next two years—for example, senior citizens in Alaska may see a rise in annual healthcare insurance premiums of more than $14,000. I wonder if they are still thrilled about giving their electoral college votes to Trump?

The Trump budget, if passed, would cut enormous numbers of civil service jobs, including scores of thousands by the elimination of 19 federal agencies and slashing the budgets for many others.

Increasing the Pentagon budget will create fewer jobs per $billion spent than in any other sector of the economy. Each $billion that goes to DoD is job loss for even more Americans.

Between the two Trump proposals, several key promises that he made to help convince gullible Americans to vote for him will be broken:

The Congressional Budget Office predicts that under Trumpcare 24 million Americans will lose health insurance, contrary to Trump’s unbelievable promise that everyone will be able to get health insurance. He lied.

“I’m not going to cut Social Security like every other Republican and I’m not going to cut Medicare or Medicaid,” Trump said as he campaigned making glib promises to everybody. The Trumpcare proposal cuts Medicaid. He lied.

Trump will completely eliminate these agencies, getting rid of some of the most forward-thinking US federal programs: The African Development Foundation; the Appalachian Regional Commission; the Chemical Safety Board; the Corporation for National and Community Service; the Corporation for Public Broadcasting; the Delta Regional Authority; the Denali Commission; the Institute of Museum and Library Services; the Inter-American Foundation; the U.S. Trade and Development Agency; the Legal Services Corporation; the National Endowment for the Arts; the National Endowment for the Humanities; the Neighborhood Reinvestment Corporation; the Northern Border Regional Commission; the Overseas Private Investment Corporation; the United States Institute of Peace; the United States Interagency Council on Homelessness; and the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars.

But Trumpcare4rich will be the actual result of his collection of proposals, featuring:

$900 billion in tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans.

Impeach.

Yours for a nonviolent future,

Tom H. Hastings, Ed.D.Director, PeaceVoice Program, Oregon Peace Institute http://www.peacevoice.info/

* * *

FURTHER EXPLANATION?

Spiritual Direct Action Affinity Group Forming

Why is living in postmodern America so aggravating, and socially stupid? The current political reality in Washington D.C. is depraved, as well as being economically crazy. Here's the question: "What are you willing to do in response to this paranoid political administration in Washington D.C.?" Today, I am forming a spiritual direct action affinity group, as an alternative to living in a pointless postmodern America. Do I need to explain any further? If you are interested, let's get started. If you are not, I wish you well.

Craig Louis Stehr

Email: CraigStehr@inbox.com

* * *

SPECIAL CITY COUNCIL MEETING

March 21, 2017

From: City of Point Arena, Point Arena City Council

Mayor Scott Ignacio ~ Vice Mayor Barbara Burkey ~ Richey Wasserman ~ Anna Dobbins ~ Jonathan Torrez

Agenda - March 21,

Special Meeting - 5:30 p.m. At City Hall -- 451 School Street

  1. CALL TO ORDER & ROLL CALL
  2. APPROVAL OF AGENDA

III. PRIVILEGE OF THE FLOOR (PUBLIC COMMENT PERIOD)

This is the time for members of the public who wish to be heard on matters that do not appear on the Agenda. City Council policy is to limit each speaker to three (3) minutes. Such time allotment or portion thereof shall not be transferred to other speakers. The public will be allowed to speak concurrently with the calling of an agenda item following the staff presentation of that item. Pursuant to the Brown Act Section 54954.3, the City Council may not take action on an item that does not appear on the Agenda.

  1. ORDINANCES & RESOLUTIONS —

All items in this Agenda section are for discussion and possible adoption.

  1. A) Resolution 2017-03 Extending the Declaration of a Local Emergency Related to Damage to Arena Cove, Point Arena Pier and Local Roadways as the Result of a Winter Storm Event.
  2. CITY MANAGER/CITY ATTORNEY REPORTS -- Discussion & Possible Action
  3. A) Review of the 2017 City Council Goals B) Discussion of Mendocino Solid Waste Management Authority C) Discussion of Medical Marijuana Ordinance 226
  4. ADJOURNMENT

Dated: March 17, 2017

City of Point Arena

451 School St.

PO Box 67

Point Arena, CA 95468

* * *

SENATOR MANCHIN SAYS HE'S STUDYING SINGLE PAYER

"Why Hasn't Bernie Sanders Introduced a Single Payer Bill Yet?" Manchin asks.

See our report from a town hall in Martinsburg, West Virginia earlier today.

http://morgancountyusa.org/?p=2789

Onward to single payer.

Single Payer Action

* * *

ELECTRIC PHIL

Electric Vehicle Fast Chargers Coming to the North Coast

Electric vehicle (EV) drivers will soon have access to fast chargers for travel on Highway 101 throughout the North Coast to the Oregon border. Funded by grants from the California Energy Commission, the new charging sites will expand the infrastructure network and extend the range of EVs.

ChargePoint has partnered with Mendocino Council of Governments (MCOG) and the Redwood Coast Energy Authority (RCEA), the regional agencies that have been advancing plans for EV readiness, to win two of the statewide grants for the North Coast. ChargePoint brings with them eminent partners such as Cal Poly San Luis Obispo and Grant Farm. The total of grants with cash and in-kind match contributions brings more than $2.7 million of investment into the regions.

The network will include a total of six locations in Humboldt and Del Norte counties, three locations in Mendocino County and two in northern Sonoma County, with the longest gap at 57 miles. Potential sites were evaluated and ranked based on convenience, accessibility, proximity to services, and distance from other planned sites. Currently planned locations include Smith River, Crescent City, Klamath, Arcata, Loleta, Garberville, Leggett, Laytonville, Willits, Cloverdale, and Healdsburg. Station installation is expected to start in 2017 and be completed in late 2018.

Each site will initially include up to two 62.5-kilowatt DC Fast Charging Stations, providing an 80% charge in 20-30 minutes for most electric vehicles. Sites will also provide Level-2 ports for EVs that are not DC compatible. Each fast charger will be equipped with the two most common fast charging connectors, compatible with the vast majority of EVs. Tesla cars can use an adapter to access the new stations.

"We are delighted to join ChargePoint and RCEA in creating this network," said Janet Orth, MCOG Deputy Director, who led MCOG's EV planning effort. "This investment will go a long way toward realizing our community's vision and plans for a public network of plug-in electric vehicle chargers serving Mendocino County locals and visitors. We thank the California Energy Commission and our partners for their leadership and a great opportunity."

"Fast chargers are a much-anticipated step in our growing network of electric vehicle charging stations," said Dana Boudreau, RCEA Operations Director. "While our initial installations focused on the daily requirements of local drivers, fast chargers allow locals to travel farther and refuel faster. They also support electric vehicle drivers who are visiting or just passing through our region. Once the fast chargers are in place, electric vehicles with quick-charge ports can feasibly travel the north coast region from San Francisco into Oregon."

"Our mission is to help get every driver behind the wheel of an EV by providing a seamless charging experience wherever they need to charge - at home, work, in town and on the road," said Rich Quattrini, Senior Director, Business Development, ChargePoint, Inc. "These new fast charge locations, combined with our growing network in California and around the country, is yet another step in helping to make driving electric a reality for more residents throughout Northern California."

MCOG, as the Regional Transportation Planning Agency, produced a Mendocino County Zero Emission Vehicle (ZEV) Regional Readiness Plan in 2012, followed by a feasibility study in 2015, that engaged stakeholders and the general public in identifying locations for a potential countywide public network of electric vehicle charging stations. In 1996, MCOG began testing and demonstrating plug-in EVs in the rural environment, building on work in the community to advance renewable energy.

RCEA is a leading regional supporter of sustainable and alternative transportation, supporting EV charging infrastructure and EV readiness planning, as well as alternative fuels, zero-emission vehicles, and fuel-cell vehicles, through advanced planning, research, and infrastructure deployment. RCEA operates a network of 14 public charging stations throughout Humboldt County, providing a locally-controlled, affordable, and economically sustainable network of charging stations in the region.

Janet Orth, Deputy Director/CFO

With Phil Dow & Associates/Mendocino Council of Governments (MCOG)

 

3 Responses to Mendocino County Today: Saturday, March 18, 2017

  1. BB Grace Reply

    March 18, 2017 at 3:56 am

    How many of the no and low income folks, the vast majority of residents in Mendocino County, own EVs?

    So who is the MCOG working for? The elites need grants? If folks can afford an EV why can’t they afford to GO FUND EV fueling stations? Why can’t Tesla have an EV commuter club? They can. So why is government buying what the rich can afford for themselves?

    It’s pretty obvious that these grants, even the ones that are deemed to help the homeless in reality help the richest residents. There’s nothing green about it. It’s greed and it’s ugly.

    • Derek Hoyle Reply

      March 19, 2017 at 11:30 pm

      You may not realize it but nearly 20 years ago there were more than a few coastal locals who owned electric vehicles (EVs).

      The majority of them were not “elites”, just folks who cared about the environment and/or who wanted to reduce their transportation costs.

      There was an EV charging station in Fort Bragg behind PG&E, and when I worked for John Takes at Burkhardt Turbines, I installed the EV charging station at the last location of the Mendocino Environmental Center, across from Mendoza’s in Mendocino, and the last time I looked it was still there, just inactive.

      Of course, these weren’t “fast chargers”, because at that time there were no EV batteries readily available that could be charged fast.

      This was a time when EVs were in the press quite a bit, primarily due to the well attended Solar Energy Expo and Rallye (S.E.E.R.) events in Willits, which featured a Solar powered EV competition.

      Back in those days EV owners were considered oddballs, and weird, and now they are vilified as elites.

      It’s quite sad, since no matter who’s driving them, I feel the EV is truly a more viable form of environmental friendly transportation than internal combustion heat engines.

      One might also consider that as more EVs take to the road, that will mean a lessor amount of heavy fuel trucks wearing out our roads, and less truck traffic to be stuck behind as we motor throughout our County, both are good things as far as I can see.

  2. Judy Valadao Reply

    March 18, 2017 at 7:20 am

    The City of Fort Bragg has no say in who purchases property on the mill site. I believe Marie explained it by saying buyers are getting good deals on the property because no one knows yet what uses will be permitted. Someone may be buying a piece of property for a use that won’t be permitted.
    Mayor Peters made it clear that no decisions would be made without public input. Fort Bragg does not own the property but can certainly have a say in the zoning.
    It will be interesting to see how it plays out but until then if anyone wants a good deal on property that they may never be able to use now is the time to make that purchase.

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