Mendocino County Today: Sunday, March 19, 2017
by AVA News Service, March 19, 2017
WET WEEK AHEAD. Light rain starting Sunday will continue for the next week or so with total accumulations reaching two or three inches for the Mendocino County area. Heaviest rain days expected to be Monday and Tuesday.
COAST HOSPITAL’S FEE STRUCTURE FLOP
And some very pointed questions for management
by Malcolm Macdonald
On March 16th Mendocino Coast District Hospital (MCDH) abandoned all plans to convert to a “Hospital Fee Structure” when it became clear that there was no money to be gained by such a conversion. In fact, in a financial impact estimate presented by the hospital's Chief Financial Officer, Wade Sturgeon, MCDH would actually lose $50,000 annually under the “Fee Structure” compared to current revenues brought in by intergovernmental transfer (IGT) funds, Assembly Bill 915 dollars (medical provider reimbursement), California Senate Bill 239 (quality assurance fees), and the “Prime Project,” which by itself brings in $750,000 this year.
The failure of the “Hospital Fee Structure” program to benefit the financially struggling hospital appears to be mere background to concerns surrounding the hospital's top administrators. Almost immediately following the disbanding of the ad hoc committee dedicated to the hospital fee plan last Thursday, the MCDH Board of Directors met in closed session to consider one item: a performance review of their CFO, Mr. Sturgeon.
Readers may recall from articles in the March 1st and 8th editions of the AVA that in the fall of 2016 Mr. Sturgeon downplayed the seriousness of billing and coding errors made by the newly contracted Emergency Room (ER) provider in his official reports to the hospital's Board of Directors and its Finance Committee. In addition, both the CFO, Sturgeon, and MCDH Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Bob Edwards, ignored internal warnings to add employees in order to sort out the billing and coding mess.
There are also creditable indications that a personnel claim, that has been referenced in an ongoing series of MCDH Board closed sessions, involves workplace harassment complaints made by the hospital's most recent chief human resources officer, complaints directed at Sturgeon and possibly CEO Edwards as well. The March 16th performance review of Sturgeon lasted just under an hour and a half, with Sturgeon in the room for a majority of the session. The remainder of the time the five MCDH Board members consulted with their legal counsel, John Ruprecht.
At the conclusion of the session, without Sturgeon present, Board Chair Steve Lund called in the only members of the press in attendance, yours truly and Marianne McGee from Mendocino TV. Lund stated that the Board would be conducting further interviews with MCDH staff before rendering any decision on Sturgeon's performance.
At that point comments from the community were allowed. I read the following questions, which were additionally submitted via email the next day to the five MCDH Board members and legal counsel Ruprecht:
Is it true that fourth quarter (Oct.-Dec.) 2016 professional fees, from Medicare, were not paid to two North Coast Family Health Center (NCFHC) physicians in anything resembling a timely fashion? Reports are that this was an ongoing problem as of Monday, March 13, 2017. A problem not reported by the CFO to the Board or the Finance Committee of MCDH.
Is it true that Rural Health Clinic (RHC) claims from NCFHC, approximately fifty days worth, dating from mid-November into Jan., 2017, had not been billed for as of March 13th?
In relation to the first question, is it true that last autumn NextGen [a provider of electronic health record sytems] refused to release the updated ICD-10 codes to this hospital, alleging that MCDH had not sent out its invoice to NextGen?
At the Jan. 4, 2017 Finance Committee, the CFO, Mr. Sturgeon, stated that issues associated with the clinic's (NCFHC) billing had been fixed or would be fixed by the end of January. Yet the issue of professional fees cited above still existed at the beginning of this week (March 13, 2017).
Is it true that last summer the CFO informed third party payers with contractual agreements that MCDH prices would rise by an average of 5% on August 1, 2016, when he should have known that such increases would not be implemented? It is alleged that as a result of the CFO's letter to this effect Blue Shield reduced payments by 5% in response, as they are contractually allowed to do. Is this allegation true? [All of the questions to this point are based on fact/data based research on my part. Much of this information was not known by the MCDH Board of Directors because CFO Sturgeon chose to withhold it from them.]
When the CFO was accused of workplace harassment, why was the accuser/victim of the harassment placed on administrative leave instead of the accused CFO?
Does MCDH have a clear written policy regarding whether the accuser or accused in harassment cases is placed on leave? Is there a policy that allows for both to be placed on leave? [Where appropriate answers, or best guess responses to these queries will be provided to readers. Indications are that the answers to these two particular questions are: No and No.]
There are allegations that the CEO has in effect been an enabler of the CFO, essentially ignoring serious complaints directed at the CFO and participating in coercive actions, including behavior aimed at humiliating accuser(s). Has the Board fully investigated this aspect of the current administration at MCDH? [Most likely answer: Not yet.]
It has been reported that the CEO obtained the results of a study regarding OB (obstetrics) risk assessment (in the case of MCDH closing the OB Dept.) as early as Feb. 21, 2017, yet failed to release those results to the OB Ad Hoc Committee for use at its final meeting. Has the MCDH Board investigated this matter? [The answer is: No, meaning the CEO, Edwards, has not shown these results to the MCDH Board either.]
It has been reported that the Hospital Foundation donated a significant amount of money in late 2015 for the purchase of infant warmers. The money, under the charge of the CFO, seems to be unaccounted for. Has the MCDH Board completely investigated this matter? [The key word is “completely.”]
Have Compliance Officers been allowed to speak to the MCDH Board, in closed session, without the CEO or CFO present? Has the Chief Human Resources Officer been allowed to speak to the full board without the CEO or CFO present? [Most likely the answer to both questions is: Yes; however the MCDH Board might want to re-interview them along with other department managers as well.]
Was the chain of command altered when the current CEO took an extended sick leave? Prior to that time it seemed that the Patient Care Services Manager would have been in charge in such a situation; however, when the CEO did go out on sick leave the CFO was suddenly in charge. Was this chain of command altered by the CEO alone, by the Board of Directors, or by the board at the behest of the CEO? Is there a clear policy in place to cover such situations? [The third option is most likely.]
Is the MCDH Board of Directors aware that a significant number of hospital employees, from manager level on down, are on the side of the person who recently filed a personnel claim (another ongoing closed session matter)? Many employees believe in this person, and, though relatively silent in public, are hoping that they will not have to continue working with the current CFO. [The most likely answer: until the point was raised a majority of the Board members were unaware.]
Has the MCDH Board of Directors hired any outside investigative services concerning the CFO's performance or the personnel complaint that is ongoing? [Most likely answer: Yes.]
The motivation for the string of questions came from reports earlier in the day (March 16th), indicating that Sturgeon's performance review would conclude with nothing more than a proverbial hand slap and that no connections whatsoever would be made to CEO Edwards' role in these matters.
However, the fact that the Board of Directors will conduct more interviews with staff puts things in a more hopeful light for the numerous hospital employees who, as cited above, have grave questions about the top two figures in MCDH's administration.
FORT BRAGG NOTES
by Rex Gressett
The Fort Bragg city manager's big idea for a total alteration in the assumed vision for the mill site development is pretty awesome. If you live in Fort Bragg and you are not caught up with what is happening at the GP mill site you should inform yourself. The proposed transformation of our great gem of coastal open space into an industrial park replete with a sewage treatment plant and a brewery is coming at you like a cruise missile.
I went into raptures of indignation, drawing a parallel between this maneuver to do something to the mill site and the Old Coast Hotel deal. They were both in fact campaigns waged by the city manager to effect an agenda most of us weren't in on.
We would like to think that our local government has the people's agenda in mind. That's what they tell us in high school civics. We presume that city hall will take the time to listen to us before they vote, not afterwards as they are now suggesting.
But 400-plus open acres on the Pacific is not the Old Coast Hotel. The information that is coming to the people on what's happening out there on the wind-swept ocean bluffs is coming fast, but it is not coming four days before a vote like the Old Coast hurry-up deal.
At the March 13 meeting of the city council, an intense effort was made to push through the council far reaching changes in mill site planning; city management, in fact, proposed an utter upending of existing policy.
That effort failed.
The proposal to have public meetings after the relevant vote had settled every issue failed with it. The city manager's plan, which involved the abandonment of every precept of public comment, had to hang fire. There would be no vote (maybe) in advance of the elaborate discussions that they promised us. We were not slam-dunked last Monday.
What we did learn is that GP are themselves moving ahead with a plan of distribution for sections of the mill site. I guess as far as GP is concerned to hell with zoning.
There is much strangeness and many ambiguities in all of this.
Planning law requires that any rezoning address itself to at least one fourth of the site.
It is the stated intention of city hall to divide the mill site and make it available for commercial and industrial applications (for local folks). Are Ms. Ruffing and city planner Ms. Jones proposing one fourth of the site for an industrial park?
No answer to that one.
Marie Jones tells us, as if in confidence, at a public meeting recorded on video that Bob Merrill, the relevant functionary at the Coastal Commission, had told her he was reliably on board with the scheme. When she asked him to put it in writing she admitted he demurred, but Ms. Jones reassured the council and city manager Ruffing she remains confident of Bob's flexible approach to coastal protection. He is, she says, in the bag.
The many years in which a larger vision for the mill site was discussed are to be tossed quietly under the bus.
A plan like this has many moving parts; one of the main things is to make it simple for the council. They guess progress is good, but they look like the little ducks that one shoots at in a shooting gallery. They have the same blank expression on their faces.
To make it simple for the council, the town's managers just went to the original local coastal plan, our bedrock city/coastal zoning ordinance, and took aim at that section L that makes it plain that the planning process must be comprehensive, open, careful of community resources, and responsible.
City management seemed to feel that the elimination of these concerns would wonderfully liberate their options.
Any new development, even the initial ones they propose, requires some specific plan. In Ms. Ruffing's proposal we see a lot of little specific plans instead of a big one.
By gutting the requirements of any specific overall plan, protections for the community, eliminating the conversation in the community and by jettisoning the requirements for infrastructure investment by developers, in fact by the elimination of that part of the zoning ordinance which protects and involves the community they were also smoothing the way for their own industrial park revisiting.
Ruffing and Jones get 'er done.
LU 7.2 states, or stated, or use to state and provisionally still does state, that rezoning be subject to a comprehensive planning process.
They changed that to one word — process.
“That changes conform to the coastal land act.”
“Changes are to be developed through a comprehensive community process.”
“Community input shall be solicited throughout the process.”
No need for that with a straightforward industrial park.
In the revision of LU7.2 the parts that are being eliminated are marked in red. It looks like the wall at the Saint Valentine's Day Massacre.
They almost gutted community protections and still intend to. Yet not one Fort Bragg city council member has so far raised an eyebrow.
UKIAH DOCTORS DON’T CARE
To the Editor:
I am writing this to say what a shame it is that we have no decent doctors in the town of Ukiah. Where are any good doctors here in Ukiah? One who cares, really cares about their patients or anybody that walks through their doors, that follows through to make sure you get the care you need.
I recently went to ER as I could not get an appointment with my own doctor and my left knee was hurting badly. I am 72 years old and have a lot of arthritis throughout my body. They took an x-ray and I saw a doctor and he told me that he saw a lot of arthritis in my knee, and I told him that it was swollen, he said he did not see any inflammation. Well, there was. I know what my knee looks like and it was swollen. I asked if I could get a cortisone shot and he told me I could but I would have to see a pain specialist for that, why? Well, I called that pain specialist and they told me I could see him on July 31! She told me I probably would not get into any doctor before that. Well this doctor on the end of his name said M.D., D.O. The doctor I saw in ER had that same thing behind his name on my papers from the hospital so he must be a pain specialist also. So was I to walk around for five months on a knee that hurt like heck before I could get some help? Why, I ask could that doctor in ER not have given me a shot that day?
My own doctor, who I will not name, sent me to a pain specialist months ago, because they took so long to get back to me I took matters into my own hands (for my back) and went to have acupuncture done. In one month’s time, my back felt great, but I have to pay out of my own pocket as my insurance will not cover this kind of medical help, but if ER would have given me that shot my insurance would have covered it. So I wonder why am I paying for insurance when I cannot find a doctor to help me?
So I called the pain specialist my doctor had referred me to for my back, to try and get an appointment with him, but because he took so long to get back to me the first time, and I had told them that I was seeing an acupuncturist and to just cancel my appointment, he now will not see me because of the cancellation. So today I called Howard Memorial Hospital to see if I could get help from them, I was advised to go back to ER in Ukiah and insist that they give me a cortisone shot which they can do. I told her, yeah right, I doubt that was going to happen.
So back to acupuncture, who told me your knee is swollen, I told her no, the doctor in ER said it was not. She said it was. So I am now trying this to see if I can get out of pain.
About two months ago I went to my doctor in tears. I was very depressed in a very dark place and I asked for his help. He was to refer me to someone. That never happened. So for two weeks I stayed in my house crying, sleeping, not seeing anyone. Did anyone care? No they did not. My best friend from the Bay Area came and stayed with me for a week because I told her I did not want to be in this world anymore. She and I talked a lot. She took me out shopping and to dinner. She helped me more than any doctor could have. She took the time to listen to me. That’s what I needed, just to talk and get my feelings out in the open instead of caged up inside of me. At this point I have no faith in any doctor in this town. I am so mad I could scream! So I would like to not thank the doctor at ER, the pain specialist and my own doctor as they did not even attempt to help me when I really needed the medicinal help. But be assured when my medications run out, my doctor will refuse them until I make an appointment to see him. Isn’t that a joke? In the first place us Baby Boomers are given way too many medications for our own good. A pill for everything they think is right for you to keep you healthy. Yeah right. The little money I get from Social Security is now going to the acupuncture who are the only ones willing to help me. Many thanks to the community acupuncturist of Ukiah. I have friends here in Ukiah that do not even have a doctor because of the lack of good ones.
Linda Warden, Ukiah
UPDATED EIR FOR UKIAH COSTCO COMPLETED, OUT FOR REVIEW
by Justine Frederiksen
An update of the Environmental Impact Report for the proposed Ukiah Costco location has been completed and is available for public review.
Interim Planning Director Kevin Thompson said the document was made available for public review last month, and the required 45-day period for collecting comments will be up on March 29.
The Ukiah City Council needed to set aside the previously approved EIR for the Costco Wholesale Warehouse Project on Airport Park Boulevard because of a semi-successful lawsuit filed by Davis-based attorney William Kopper in 2014.
The lawsuit was at first rejected by a Mendocino County Superior Court judge, but Kopper appealed that decision and won a partial victory when the First District Court of Appeal reversed that decision and determined the EIR should not have been certified.
City Attorney David Rapport said while the court dismissed nearly all of Kopper’s claims and found most areas of the EIR adequate, it did find that the analysis of the energy use of the proposed store was not handled correctly.
The city attempted to rectify the situation by adding “an addendum to address a new requirement, but the appeals court said the energy use section had to be included in the EIR before it was certified and could not be adopted afterward.”
Thompson said this week that Costco is still “very interested in the project” and once the public comment period is over, planning staff will prepare the document for hearings before the Planning Commission and City Council.
However, Thompson said it is hard to estimate at this point when that might be because it is unknown how many comments will be received on the new document.
“We have to respond to every one,” he said, adding that while no comments had been received so far, “often people wait until the very last minute.”
To read the updated EIR Energy Use Analysis go to http://www.cityofukiah.com/public-notices/
(Courtesy, the Ukiah Daily Journal)
SALMON RUNS CRASH, CLOSING NORTH COAST FISHING SEASON
by Daniel Mintz
With record low runs forecasted, the commercial and recreational ocean Chinook salmon fishing seasons in the Klamath Management Zone (KMZ) from Southern Oregon to north of Shelter Cove will be closed this season.
The in-river Klamath tribal fishery will also be heavily restricted, with the Yurok and Hoopa Valley tribes sharing allocations that only number in the hundreds of fish.
Ocean salmon abundance is expected to be so low this year that the Pacific Fishery Management Council, the agency which sets season times and area catch limits, is considering a statewide closure of the commercial Chinook salmon season.
Rainfall is far above average now but that won’t help the salmon that were hatching three years ago. Drought was peaking, water temperatures rose and low flows impacted migration to the ocean.
In the lower Klamath River, the low flows and high water temperatures also promoted parasitic infection and disease.
The juvenile salmon that made it out of the river systems were met with additional challenges, as ocean water temperatures were also above normal, a situation that has only recently let up.
The PFMC approved a range of West Coast salmon season alternatives on March 13. A PFMC press release issued the same day stated that “drought, disease, poor ocean conditions and other issues” are expected to reduce Klamath River Chinook salmon returns to a record low level.
Klamath ocean salmon abundance is estimated at 54,200 fish, one-third of last year’s forecast. “It is the lowest forecast we’ve seen for this stock,” said Mike Burner, the PFMC’s deputy director.
The bleak forecasts have triggered a PFMC policy that focuses on getting as many salmon as possible to their spawning grounds. Burner said that the council still strives for balance by mixing and matching various alternatives.
A coastwide fishing closure “isn’t likely” said Burner, but he added that it’s “difficult to predict – this is a pretty dire situation and I wouldn’t put it outside of possibility that the council takes a pretty conservative approach this year, as we are in unprecedented territory.”
This winter’s abundant rainfall and snowpack will boost river flows and improve conditions for out-river migration.
“Salmon can turn around quickly if conditions turn around,” Burner said, adding even a relatively small number of juveniles can lead to good return levels if ocean conditions are favorable.
But it will take time for those positive effects to translate into improved salmon returns and for another two to three years, drought impacts will affect runs.
“I would expect that we’re looking at a few broods here, that either due to drought or recent marine conditions, we’ll probably continue to see some depression of their returns,” said Burner. “So there will be a lag but I would think that with relaxation of drought conditions, things can only be going in the right direction.”
Until things improve, fishing restrictions will be effected.
In the Fort Bragg area from Shelter Cove to Point Arena, the only commercial fishing option is for September and a complete closure is on the table. Recreational fishing alternatives in that area are also restricted compared to previous years.
Returns of endangered winter run Sacramento River Chinook are also expected to be low and restrictions will be in effect south of Point Arena.
The PFMC will hold a series of public hearings on the alternatives and approve a final West Coast salmon season on April 11. The National Marine Fisheries Service will issue definitive approval by May 1.
LITTLE DOG SAYS, “Sorry, folks, but I'm a baseball nut. I'm sorry that Cain is pretty much finished, but Michael Morse is back, the funnest guy in the game!”
ON LINE COMMENT OF THE DAY
Just got back to SF. I’ve traveled around the world and I gotta say there is nothing more grotesque than walking down Market st in San Francisco. Why the heart of our city has to be overrun by crazy, homeless, drug dealers, dropouts, and trash I have no clue. Each time I pass it my love affair with SF dies a little.
The difference is in other cosmopolitan cities, the lower part of society keep to themselves. They sell small trinkets, beg coyly, stay quiet, and generally stay out of your way. They realize it’s a privilege to be in the civilized part of town and view themselves as guests. And that’s okay.
In downtown SF the degenerates gather like hyenas, spit, urinate, taunt you, sell drugs, get rowdy, they act like they own the center of the city. Like it’s their place of leisure… In actuality it’s the business district for one of the wealthiest cities in the USA. It a disgrace. I don’t even feel safe walking down the sidewalk without planning out my walking path.
You can preach compassion, equality, and be the biggest lover in the world, but there is an area of town for degenerates and an area of town for the working class. There is nothing positive gained from having them so close to us. It’s a burden and a liability having them so close to us. Believe me, if they added the smallest iota of value I’d consider thinking different, but the crazy toothless lady who kicks everyone that gets too close to her cardboard box hasn’t made anyone’s life better in a while.
(Post by Greg Gopman—cited in Lapham’s Quarterly)
* * *
THE SOLUTION is a national revival of mental hospitals, which is unlikely because sequestering, treating, then housing and continuing to treat the growing casualties of our way of living will cost a lot of money, a lot of money that would have to come from those who have a lot of money, obtained from them by a fair system of taxation. Or at the end of pitchfork, which seems more and more inevitable.
BERNIE, the great socialist, proposed a tax rate of about forty percent on the big fortunes. Under Eisenhower, the anti-socialist, taxes on the rich exceeded 90 percent on incomes over $100,000. 60 bi-partisan years later, the rich are off the hook.
SURE, that's all huge simplification, but in San Francisco alone, the city shovels something like $380 million a year to an array of non-profits, led by lushly compensated professional doers-of-good, to get the euphemized "homeless" off the streets. The actual people out there on the streets are drop-fall drunks, drug addicts, crazy people, criminals, and a few comprehensive incompetents, the last the kind of people who used to spend their days in institutions for the mentally impaired.
THE TRULY HOMELESS, the people who, through bad breaks or their own fecklessness, find themselves without shelter, typically find their way out of homelessness by working their way out, mentally and physically. You see them, at least in San Francisco, living out of their vehicles, many of them employed. They would gladly pay rent if there was something available in the Bay Area at less than 70 percent of their monthly income. There are help wanted signs all over the Bay Area to fill jobs that don't pay enough to buy food and shelter, let alone the rest of the amenities us fortunatos assume as our right as citizens.
HOW MANY OF US housed people right now could come up with $7 or $8 grand to pay a deposit and first and last rent to get out of Frisco's rain and cold? What's a tenement-quality apartment go for in Ukiah, Willits and Fort Bragg? Here in Boonville, a decent house, however modest, if you can find one, will cost you upwards of $2500 a month.
A REAL DEMOCRATIC PARTY would address the true economic situation, true for a majority of people anyway, but a real Democratic Party is not on the political horizon. I'll bet the guy above who laments the dismaying street scene in San Francisco voted for Hillary.
EVERYONE LOVES BERNIE SANDERS. EXCEPT, IT SEEMS, THE DEMOCRATIC PARTY
by Trevor Timm
If you look at the numbers, Bernie Sanders is the most popular politician in America – and it’s not even close. Yet bizarrely, the Democratic party – out of power across the country and increasingly irrelevant – still refuses to embrace him and his message. It’s increasingly clear they do so at their own peril.
A new Fox News poll out this week shows Sanders has a +28 net favorability rating among the US population, dwarfing all other elected politicians on both ends of the political spectrum. And he’s even more popular among the vaunted “independents”, where he is at a mind boggling +41.
This poll is not just an aberration. Look at this Huffington Post chart that has tracked Sanders’ favorability rating over time, ever since he gained national prominence in 2015 when he started running for the Democratic nomination. The more people got to know him, they more they liked him – the exact opposite of what his critics said would happen when he was running against Clinton.
One would think with numbers like that, Democratic politicians would be falling all over themselves to be associated with Sanders, especially considering the party as a whole is more unpopular than the Republicans and even Donald Trump right now. Yet instead of embracing his message, the establishment wing of the party continues to resist him at almost every turn, and they seem insistent that they don’t have to change their ways to gain back the support of huge swaths of the country.
Politico ran a story just this week featuring Democratic officials fretting over the fact that Sanders supporters may upend their efforts to retake governorships in southern states by insisting those candidates adopt Sanders’ populist policies – seemingly oblivious to the fact that Sanders plays well in some of those states too.
Sanders’ effect on Trump voters can be seen in a gripping town hall this week that MSNBC’s Chris Hayes hosted with him in West Virginia – often referred to as “Trump country” – where the crowd ended up giving him a rousing ovation after he talked about healthcare being a right of all people and that we are the only industrialized nation in the world who doesn’t provide healthcare as a right to all its people.
But hand wringing by Democratic officials over 2018 candidates is really just the latest example: the establishment wing of the party aggressively ran another opponent against Keith Ellison, Sanders’ choice to run the Democratic National Committee, seemingly with the primary motivation to keep the party away from Sanders’ influence.
They’ve steadfastly refused to take giant corporations head on in the public sphere and wouldn’t even return to an Obama-era rule that banned lobbyist money from funding the DNC that was rescinded last year. And despite the broad popularity of the government guaranteeing health care for everyone, they still have not made any push for a Medicare-for-all plan that Sanders has long called for as a rebuttal to Republicans’ attempt to dismantle Obamacare.
Democrats seem more than happy to put all the blame of the 2016 election on a combination of Russia and James Comey and have engaged in almost zero introspection on the root causes of the larger reality: they are also out of power in not only the presidency, but also both houses of Congress, governorships and state houses across the country as well.
As Politico reported on the Democrats’ post-Trump strategy in February, “Democratic aides say they will eventually shift to a positive economic message that Rust Belt Democrats can run on”. However: “For now, aides say, the focus is on slaying the giant and proving to the voters who sent Trump into the White House why his policies will fail.”
In other words, they’re doubling down on the exact same failing strategy that Clinton used in the final months of the campaign. Sanders himself put it this way in his usual blunt style in an interview with New York magazine this week – when asked about whether the Democrats can adapt to the political reality, he said: “There are some people in the Democratic Party who want to maintain the status quo. They would rather go down with the Titanic so long as they have first-class seats.”
In the long term, change may be coming for Democrats whether they like it or not. Sanders loyalists are quietly attempting to take over many local Democratic party positions around the country. While Ellison lost the race for the DNC chair, it was incredibly close – closer than Sanders came to beating Clinton. And Sanders’ supporters are already organizing primary challenges to incumbent Democrats who aren’t sufficiently opposing Trump.
One thing’s for sure: Democrats who refuse to change do so at their peril.
(Courtesy, The Guardian of London)
CATCH OF THE DAY, March 18, 2017
Galindo-Hernandez, Garcia, Goines
AMADEO GALINDO-HERNANDEZ, Ukiah. DUI.
JESUS GARCIA, Talmage. Battery.
CHARLES GOINES, Willits. Domestic assault.
House, Grunwald, Jackson, Kidd
MICHAEL GRUNWALD, Cave Junction Oregon/Ukiah Burglary, probation revocation.
JONATHAN HOUSE, Fort Bragg. Paraphernalia, County parole violation.
TREVOR JACKSON, Talmage. Burglary, prior strike.
JARED KIDD, Ukiah. Drunk in public. (Frequent flyer.)
Mata, McAlister, Rodriguez-Chavaria
RAFAEL MATA JR., Ukiah. Dirk-dagger, impersonation of someone else, controlled substance, probation revocation.
VIOLET MCALISTER, Ukiah. Petty theft, controlled substance, under influence, paraphernalia, possession of drugs while armed, probation revocation.
JULIO RODRIGUEZ-CHAVARIA, Ukiah. Stalking, fugitive from justice, meth possession.
IT COULD HAPPEN HERE!
Snowflakes 101: University of Arizona distributes 20-page booklet on how to deal with microaggressions - recommending the offended say 'OUCH' and the offender 'OOPS'
The University of Arizona has released a booklet on handling microaggressions
The booklet describes one approach as the 'oops/ouch' method
Microaggressions are 'everyday verbal, nonverbal, and environmental slights, snubs or insults' based off an individual's minority status
In an attempt to create a more respectful campus environment, the University of Arizona has released a booklet on handling microaggressions.
The 20-page packet discusses a number of guidelines for inside and outside the classroom for teachers and students to follow.
One section titled 'Oops/Ouch' discusses one possible method to use in identifying and reacting to microaggressions in a classroom.
The guideline reads: 'If a student feels hurt or offended by another student's comment, the hurt student can say 'ouch.'
'In acknowledgement, the student who made the hurtful comment says 'oops.' If necessary, there can be further dialogue about this exchange.'
The suggested 'oops/ouch' approach is one of a number of possible intervention strategies professors can use in classroom scenarios that may make marginalized groups uncomfortable provided by the booklet.
The definition of a microaggression is also lined out in the booklet, which was approved by the University's Vice Provost for Inclusive Excellence Jesús Treviño, Ph.D.
He was hired in May 2016 to help promote diversity and inclusion on the school's campus.
A microaggression is defined as 'the everyday verbal, nonverbal, and environmental slights, snubs or insults, whether intentional or unintentional, that communicate hostile, derogatory, or negative messages to target persons based solely upon their marginalized group membership.'
These include perpetuating a number of race-based or gender-based stereotypes which often aren't considered offensive, but have subtle underlying tones of heteronormativity, sexism, and racism.
Continuing to mispronounce the names of students after they have corrected you time and time again
Professor: 'Is Jose Cuinantila here?' Student: 'I am here, but my name is Jesús Quintanilla.'
- Scheduling tests and project due dates on religious or cultural holidays
'It has just been pointed out to me that I scheduled the mid-term during Rosh Hashanah, but we are okay because I don't see any Jewish students in the class.'
- Setting low expectations for students from particular groups or high schools 'Oh, so Robert, you're from Pine Ridge High School? You are going to need lots of academic help in my class!'
- Calling on and validating male students and ignoring female students during class discussions
'Let's call on John again. He seems to have lots of great responses to some of these problems.'
- Expressing racially charged political opinions in class assuming that people with those racial/ethnic identities do not exist in class
'I think illegal aliens are criminals because they are breaking the law and need to be rounded up and sent back to Mexico.'
- Singling students out in class because of their backgrounds
'You're Asian! Can you tell us what the Japanese think about our trade policies?'
- Denying the experiences of students by questioning the credibility and validity of their stories
'I've eaten and shopped plenty of times in that part of town and it's nothing like you describe it. How long have you lived there and who are you hanging out with?'
- Assigning class projects that are heterosexist, sexist, racist, or promote other oppressions
'For the class project, I want you to think about a romantic relationship that you have had with a member of the opposite sex. Think and write about your observations.'
- Not respecting students gender pronouns, especially students who use gender neutral pronouns
'Alex, you use 'they/them' pronouns. No, that's too confusing. They is plural. I'm going to use him for you.'
- Using heterosexist or sexist examples or language in class.
'Atoms sometimes attract each other like this male and female here. At the same time, atoms sometimes repel each other like these two males here.'
- Assigning projects that ignore differences in socioeconomic class status 'For this class, you are required to visit four art galleries located in the downtown area. The entrance fees vary, but I am sure you can afford it.'
- Assuming that all students are from the U.S and fully understand American culture and the English language (i.e., be aware that there may be international students in the class)
'What do you mean you have never heard of The Cosby Show? Where have you been hiding?'
- Discouraging students from working on projects that explore their own social identities 'If you are Native American, I don't want you to write your paper on Native Americans. You already know everything about that group and besides you will be biased in your writing.'
- Asking people with invisible disabilities to identify themselves in class
'This is the last time that I am going to ask. Anybody with a disability who needs extra help, raise your hand!'
- Making assumptions about students and their backgrounds:
'You're Latino, and you don't speak Spanish? You should be ashamed of yourself!'
(Courtesy of University of Arizona Office for Diversity and Inclusive Excellence. Daily Mail On Line)
ON LINE COMMENT OF THE DAY II
There are certainly some people who want to censor “hate speech” which ultimately can be defined as anything. Say something which offends a politician, a banker, a Moslem, or a pedophile and you’re guilty of “hate speech”. You’ve made them sad. Off to the political re-education camp you go, you hateful one! Voltaire said, “We’ll know who truly rules us by whom we are not allowed to criticize.”
National Poetry Month:
- Poem Cut-Ups (teens), Wednesday, April 5th 2-5pm
- Poetry Magnets (teens), Wednesday, April 12th 2-5 pm
- Postcard Poems & Mail Art (teens), Wednesday, April 19th 2-5pm
- Into the Wild Poem (Adults & Teens): Saturday, April 29th 11-12 pm
National Poetry Month is the largest literary celebration in the world, with tens of millions of readers, students, K-12 teachers, librarians, booksellers, literary events curators, publishers, bloggers, and, of course, poets marking poetry’s important place in our culture and our lives.
The goals of National Poetry Month are to:
- highlight the extraordinary legacy and ongoing achievement of American poets
- encourage the reading of poems
- assist teachers in bringing poetry into their classrooms
- increase the attention paid to poetry by national and local media
- encourage increased publication and distribution of poetry books, and
- encourage support for poets and poetry.
Poem Cut-Ups – Teens will discover how to make poems from a variety of sources, including dictionaries, newspapers, rocks, the mind, & music. We’ll have fun exploring language & syntax through play, as well as cut & paste fragments from other poems.
Poetry Magnets – We’ll make our own magnetic poetry kits to take home.
Registration is required – please call 467-6434 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to sign up!
Postcard Poems & Mail Art – Teens will learn about the joys of giving & receiving mail art! Using the postcard as a format, teens will draw or paint a visual image on one-side of the pre-stamped postcard, then flip it over and use the reverse side as a form to compose a poem, & finally mail it to a friend or family member.
Into the Wild Poem – Open to both teens and adults, this will be a guided poetry walk through downtown Ukiah. Using various creative writing exercises and methods, we will make poems based on visual & aural observations of our surroundings, chance operations, & play with metrics, rhythm, & cadence to discover where the line breaks take us. Into the Wild Poem will be facilitated by Melissa Eleftherion Carr (MLIS, MFA), author of field guide to autobiography, huminsect, Pigtail Duty, and others. Registration is required – please call/email Melissa to sign up: 467- email@example.com
All poetry events are free and open to the public. Sponsored by the Friends of the Ukiah Valley Library
* * *
Spring Reading Challenge for Adults And Teens:
From now through April 15, the Mendocino County Library is offering a Spring reading challenge for adults and teens. The program challenges community members to read in a variety of formats and genres, connect with other community members, and discover new experiences and community places.
You can pick up a game card at your local library branch. Each Bingo-style game card presents options in three types of categories. Orange squares present a READ option such as Read a graphic novel or comic book. Blue squares present a CONNECT option such as Eat a meal without looking at a screen. Green squares present a DISCOVER option such as Visit a museum. Complete five consecutive squares in any direction and return your card to the library by April 15th for a chance to win a Kindle Fire.
The culmination of the Spring Reading Challenge coincides with National Library Week which begins April 9th and ends April 15th. National Library Week is a time to celebrate the contributions of our nation's libraries and librarians and to promote library use and support.
At Mendocino County Library, Ukiah Branch
* * *
The Porter Conspiracy, by local author and Ukiah Daily Journal columnist, Gene Paleno.
The Porter Conspiracy tells the story of Union Major General Fitz-John Porter, who was falsely accused of being responsible for losing the Second Battle of Bull Run (Manassas) in 1862.
Gene Paleno, author of the Lake Count History, writes to entertain. As a member of the local Civil War Round Table, a Member of the Civil War Trust, and a published historian, Gene’s dedication to knowing more about the Civil War is bone deep.
Gene's written fifteen full-length novels and several collections of stories.... on a wide range of subjects, and a weekly newspaper column for the UDJ of the animals and people he's met while he's farmed...to novels of adult science fiction and fantasy.
SAVE THE DATE: Saturday April 22 at 10 am
March for Science Mendocino Coast
Gather at Fort Bragg Town Hall and march through downtown to Bainbridge Park for a short rally. Continue on foot or by vehicle to the Earth Day Festival at Noyo Food Forest. More information coming soon!
Get updates on this listserv, visit mobilizemendo.org, or follow the event on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/events/204499326702911/
Mission: The March for Science champions robustly funded and publicly communicated science as a pillar of human freedom and prosperity. We unite as a diverse, nonpartisan group to call for science that upholds the common good and for political leaders and policy makers to enact evidence based policies in the public interest.
For more information about the international March for Science: https://www.marchforscience.com/
For more information about the Earth Day Festival at Noyo Food Forest: http://noyofoodforest.org/earth-day/
About That Ten-Million-Dollar Comma: https://www.newyorker.com/culture/culture-desk/a-few-words-about-that-ten-million-dollar-serial-comma
KZYX COMMUNITY NEWS WATCH:
Keeping track of how much “community” is in KZYX’s “Community News” based on their on-line audio archive and limited on-line news page.
Beginning with Feb 23:
Thu, 2/23: Lake County flooding. Conservation Easement at Lake Pillsbury. National Forest Weather Closures.
Fri, 2/24: Ukiah homeless shelter problems.
* * *
Mon, 2/27: Settler murder update based on the Sheriff’s Press Release. Fort Bragg homeless/HC shelter closure interview. (Very poor audio quality, mostly unintelligible.)
Tue, Feb 28: Trump’s speech to Congress.
Wed, Mar 1: Canned. Nothing local.
Thu, Mar 2: Nothing posted.
Fri, Mar 3: Nothing posted. (However, on March 3 there was a KZYX facebook audio post story about a homeless woman named “Butterfly.”)
* * *
Mon, Mar 6: Nothing posted.
Tue, Mar 7: Nothing posted.
Wed, Mar 8: Nothing posted.
Thu, Mar 9: State funding for disaster funding (nothing about Mendo roads). International Women’s Day. Lake County Cannabis ordinance. Weather.
Fri, Mar 10: Hwy 101 reopened north of Leggett. Bodega man arrested in Fort Bragg (from the Press Democrat). Pot raid in Humboldt County Park. Weather.
* * *
Mon, Mar 13: (abbreviated repeat of Mar 10 broadcast. Recording cut short for apparent technical reasons).
Tue, Mar 14: Pepper spray incident at Lakeport Safeway. Mendo Grand jury seeks applicants. California as Sanctuary State. Starhawk workshop in Willits. Lake County fire funding measure. Weather.
Wed, Mar 15: Candidates Night broadcast, no news.
Thu, Mar 16: Canned world news. No local news.
Fri, Mar 17: Show begins with an announcement of “an emergency in the KZYX family” which “affects” the production of news and weather. Listeners are asked to “bear with us at this time as we respond to this emergency.” Followed by canned national and international news.
* * *
KZYX News has a recent webpage:
The KZYX News page has a couple of local news briefs which apparently never made it on the air (which kind of begs the question about community news on the radio station itself). But the items at least mention a couple Mendo news items such as the Sheriff’s recent zip tie program reboot, and the Orr Springs road closure, But that’s about it, and it’s very brief. On March 15 an item appeared about the re-opening of the Clearlake campground.
* * *
SUMMARY: In the last four weeks (i.e., almost 20 nights of on-air or on-line audio “community news”) that’s maybe four (being generous) Mendocino-based items, two of which were simply readings from other sources, and one of the remaining two with such poor audio quality that it was nearly unintelligible. Nothing about the Board of Supervisors or any summary of the many major local stories being covered by conventional sources, much less by the AVA.
Still no response about this from KZYX manager Jeffrey Parker.
SEVERANCE PAY? NO WONDER THE THING IS BROKE
Subject: KZYX Board
Dear Val Muchowski,
KZYX is in a bit of trouble and I'm turning to you for HELP. KZYX has 9 board member seats. As you are aware we are having an election for 3 seats - dist. 3 & dist 4. and an at large seat. The 2 districts are unopposed but one of the candidates just let us know she will NOT be running (health reasons) so that seat will be open Meanwhile. Benj Thomas (from Ukiah) has just stepped down, and furthermore there is another sitting board member who would like to step down if we find someone to fill that seat. So, as you can see this now leaves us with 3 open seats on the board. NOT GOOD!
Was talking to Rachel Binah today and she reminded me that you are the PERFECT person to ask about this. Here is an opportunity to get some women on a board! At this point we can't have another election but we CAN APPOINT people. Appointees do NOT need to come from any particular district so this makes it easy. No campaigning, but of course they would need some kind of BIO. We will be holding an Orientation for new Board Members on APRIL 15 in Ukiah - pretty much an all day affair - but important.
Can you help with this? Send out the word? Encourage folks to join up? Please forward my email if there are any questions about KZYX that I can answer.
Meanwhile please vote for Jenness Hartley. She is an incumbent & has been good for the station. Sakowicz is a nightmare; he has cost the station thousands of dollars in legal fees.
Hope we can conjure up some good sturdy woman who want to help our great little community radio!
Meg Courtney, KZYX Board Member
* * *
Why pick on me? Didn't Coate and Aigner each cost KZYX many thousands of dollars in severance pay?
A totally unnecessary -- and unanticipated, unbudgeted -- cost?
Because the station had no policy on accrued vacation and sick time, Coate and Aigner each racked up a huge accrual that KZYX had to pay out in hard-earned dollars -- most of the severance, I'm guessing, was paid out in listener dollars from Pledge Drives, although Coate's and Aigner's avarice and KZYX's lack of policy never got mentioned during Pledge Drives.
KZYX had no policy on vacation and sick time accruals, and, thus, the liability was, in theory, limited only by Coate's eight years of employment and Aigner's 20-plus years of employment. That was a lot of money. Severance was a huge payday for both Coate and Aigner.
Meanwhile, whatever legal defense I cost KZYX could have been easily avoided by the station, if it had been compliant with FCC regulations.
Now, I fear, KZYX will soon be defending itself again with the IRS over its fraudulent Form 990s.
The CPB can't be far behind in an audit of KZYX.
So here's my advice to Ms. Muchowski or anybody else contemplating a KZYX Board seat: Given KZYX's lack of real accounting and audit standards, given its fraudulent IRS Form 990 tax returns, and given its indebtedness to NPR, the CA Department of Forestry, American Radio International, Pacifica and others, and given its unpaid balance on the station's letter of credit at the Mendocino Savings Bank, any new Board Director at KZYX should have cause for worry.
Real cause for worry.
A nonprofit's directors are usually -- but not always -- protected from personal liability for lawsuits against the nonprofit. In California, once an organization is incorporated, its directors or trustees, officers, employees, and members usually won't be on the hook personally for the nonprofit's debts or liabilities. That includes unpaid organizational debts and unsatisfied court judgments against the nonprofit.
Exceptions to the Limited Liability Rule
In a few situations, people involved with a nonprofit corporation can be held personally liable for its debts. A director or officer of a nonprofit corporation can be held personally liable, if he or she:
- personally and directly injures someone
- personally guarantees a bank loan or a business debt on which the corporation defaults
- fails to ensure that the nonprofit deposits taxes (such as payroll and property taxes) or files necessary tax returns
- does something intentionally fraudulent, illegal, or clearly wrong-headed that causes harm, or
- co-mingles nonprofit and personal funds.
John Sakowicz, Ukiah
ONE GRAFFITO, TWO GRAFFITI.
"In Italian the word graffiti is a plural noun and its singular form is graffito. Traditionally, the same distinction has been maintained in English, so that graffiti, being plural, would require a plural verb, as in: the graffiti were all over the wall. By the same token, the singular would require a singular verb, as in: there was a graffito on the wall. Today, these distinctions survive in some specialist fields such as archaeology but sound odd to most native speakers. The most common modern use is to treat graffiti as if it were a mass noun, similar to a word like writing, and not to use graffito at all. In this case, graffiti takes a singular verb, as in: the graffiti was all over the wall. Such uses are now widely accepted as standard. A similar process is going on with other words such as agenda, data, and media."
That being said, the recording of last night's (2017-03-17) pretty good KNYO Memo of the Air: Good Night Radio show is ready to download for free and enjoy, via http://MemoOfTheAir.wordpress.com
Here's something so personally outrageous that it's actually kind of cool: You'll recall how there's been a problem with, sometimes, my show not being picked up in progress and going out on KMEC Ukiah from midnight to 3am the way Sid Cooperrider set things up there. KNYO Fort Bragg has been very reliable since the repairs on both KNYO's end and my end, wherever I am, even when I'm doing the show from Juanita's apartment. When I put on something recorded and have a moment to check, KNYO is always playing what I'm sending. Okay, just after midnight last night, while Rich Alcott's Attention Deficit News was on my box and demonstrably squirting out through KNYO's transmitter, I went to KMEC via TuneIn.com and it was playing not Rich Alcott but instead some kind of hip-hop music. This has happened before. I emailed Sid, asked him to look into it, and went back to doing my show.
Sid wrote back today: "I'll see what's up. Last week I tuned in and found someone in the studio, muting your show, playing hiphop. I don't believe that person would do that again, but ???"
So, see? Sometimes it's just that simple. This is good. It's not an intractable technical problem; it's just a matter of everybody getting the memo, though clearly someone already got the memo and either didn't read it or didn't care. People are funny. Sid and Ed will deal with it.
Anyway, also at http://MemoOfTheAir.wordpress.com you'll find literally thousands of links to not necessarily radio-useful but certainly worthwhile material, such as:
Coney Island: http://tinyurl.com/ShimmeryConeyIsland
And the Council of Elrond: http://existentialcomics.com/comic/175