Mendocino County Today: Monday, June 12, 2017
by AVA News Service, June 11, 2017
A READER ALERTS us that the perennially troubled and often incompetent Children's Protective Services (aka Family and Children’s Services) agency of Mendocino County may be the object of an NBC Television investigation. In-county complaints about CPS have been ignored for years. We blame the Superior Court for turning a blind eye, as they dependably do when CPS has committed crimes against children, but the Supervisors bear their share of responsibility, too:
"I know people working in the Ukiah CPS office who tell me that working conditions there are worse now then they were before the first Grand Jury report two years ago. The middle level management has not changed in years and they continue to make disastrous decisions that leave many kids unsafe. It is only a matter of time until this careless treatment by CPS leads to a severely injured child or, worse yet, a dead child. [Ed note: It already has, as readers recall the Baby Emerald case out of Fort Bragg.] The NBC reporter is very interested in hearing directly from any of the readers in your subscription area who have had problems with Mendo CPS in the past, to call and speak to her and tell her their stories. She will keep their identities confidential if they wish. This would include professionals who are mandated reporters or people who have dealt directly with the department, or former clients who feel like their rights have been violated by CPS, virtually anyone. This will be a story on TV in the coming few weeks. However, time is definitely of the essence because she will be completing her investigation soon. The reporter I speak of is named, Vicky Nguyen, and you have probably seen her prior investigations on NBC Bay Area news. Ms. Nguyen can be reached at 408 432-4584 or Victoria.Nguyen@nbcuni.com."
YREKA MAN DIES AFTER BEING RUN OVER BY HIS OWN CAR
On Saturday, June 10, 2017, at about 4 pm, Mr. Charles Welch, 57, of Yreka, and his wife were pushing their stalled vehicle, a BMW sedan, up an incline on the Russian River access road just north of Highway 222 (Talmage Road). The BMW began to roll towards Mr. Welch who was pushing from the front of the vehicle and his wife got into the driver's seat in an attempt to gain control of the vehicle. The vehicle continued to roll and rolled on to Mr. Welch. Mr. Welch and the vehicle continued into a dry creek bed where the vehicle came to rest on top of Mr. Welch. As a result of this collision, Mr. Welch suffered fatal injuries. The cause of this collision is still under investigation.
CHP Officer D. Rowan
INTERESTING one-man fish restoration project carried out on Ukiah's fish-free Gibson Creek by Sean White, better known as Director of Water and Sewer for the City of Ukiah (and formerly in charge of the Russian River Flood Control District): https://youtu.be/qQnwhbek4Is
FURTHER EVIDENCE of why Ukiah is broke and will stay that way despite management claims that the city will have a budget surplus of about $2 million. The Ukiah City Council is about to approve a $100 million budget for a single fiscal year. They're spending $4 million on salary increases, including big ones for their managers, a defensible but probably underestimated $42 mil on a recycled water system, an indefensible corporate give away to Costco for "infrastructure improvements" in the Big Box neighborhood of Airport Park that Costco demanded before they would condescend to do business in Mendocino County.
GROUNDWATER LAW COULD MEAN LIMITS ON THOUSANDS OF WELLS
New oversight of groundwater taking shape in Sonoma County
LITTLE DOG SAYS, “No frisbie, but I've got a basketball. I roll it around by myself. People ask me, ‘Isn't playing ball by yourself kinda sad, kinda lonely?’ Nah. I was never a team sports dog anyway.”
FOR WHAT EXACTLY?
To the Editor:
On Memorial Day, I was driving through the Laytonville area on my way to Santa Rosa. As I passed a turnout on Hwy 101, I noticed a CHP and sheriff car. A very short distance south, I observed approximately four CHP and four sheriff’s cars in another turnout. A short distance later, two more. Soon after, a CHP and sheriff passed me going Code 3 northbound.
Based on the amount of police, I assumed that an officer involved shooting, multiple homicide or other major event had taken place. Imagine my surprise the next day when I discovered that the crime was a “pot burglary.” Not an armed pot robbery mind you but pot missing from a shed. Yes, the victim of the theft said he saw four men, one of whom allegedly had an “assault rifle,” but essentially the crime was a minor burglary of pot and nobody was seen or discovered by police.
For that, the CHP pulled all the north county units off Memorial Day traffic enforcement as well as all sheriff’s units in a large area.
Is this the vision for Mendocino County? Leaving law abiding people vulnerable because a pot grower got ripped off? The next time your shed is burglarized and your mower stolen, see if every cop in the county responds.
Ken Good, Gig Harbor, Washington (formerly Ukiah)
CATCH OF THE DAY, June 11, 2017
Alvarez-Lopez, Araiza, Barajas, Bradley
JOEL ALVAREZ-LOPEZ, Ukiah. DUI-drugs&alcohol, controlled substance, smuggling controlled substances or alcohol into jail.
SAMUEL ARAIZA, Turlock/Ukiah. Brandishing, criminal threats.
JAIME BARAJAS, Ukiah. Engaging in three or more acts of substantial sexual conduct with child under 14 for not less than three months.
THOMAS BRADLEY JR., Eureka/Ukiah. DUI.
Ceja, Larkin, McGregor
SEBASTIAN CEJA, Ukiah. Domestic abuse, probation revocation.
LISA LARKIN, Redwood Valley. Drunk in public.
ROY MCGREGOR, Fort Bragg. Disturbing the peace, probation revocation.
McNiel, Partida, Peters
JUSTIN MCNIEL, Talmage. Domestic abuse.
TREVOR PARTIDA, Hopland. DUI.
MONIQUE PETERS, Ukiah. Community Supervision Violation.
Sanders, Siddons, Tolliver
THOMAS SANDERS, Fort Bragg. Drunk in public. (Frequent flyer.)
MARIYA SIDDONS, Willits. First degree burglary.
MARTY TOLLIVER, Fort Bragg. Suspended license.
Traskos, Webb, Wood
MOSES TRASKOS, Fort Bragg. Dirk-dagger, hashish, smoking-injecting device, suspended license.
JOSHUA WEBB, Laytonville. Meth sale, probation revocation.
DUSTIN WOOD, Ukiah. Petty theft, controlled substance, failure to appear, probation revocation.
ONLY historical amnesiacs could think of the FBI as an apolitical national police force. The FBI, since its inception by a cross-dressing paranoid, has always made political policing its first obligation. (J.Edgar Cocktail Dress famously exempted organized crime from scrutiny because they knew how the self-promoting G-Man spent his evenings.) Even the friendliest history of the FBI confirms the agency political purpose.
CURRENT FBI DIRECTOR COMEY, battling Trump to see who can leak the fastest, of course looks more plausible alongside Orange Man. If Comey were the pillar of a-political rectitude he pretends to be, he wouldn't be trying to zap Orange Man before Orange Man zaps him.
LOCAL EXAMPLE of the FBI at work is the Bari Bombing case. The feds managed not to see Bari's ex-husband among the primary suspects, and soon said they were closing the case "because no one would talk to us," neatly pointing directly at themselves as involved, not in the bombing itself but in protecting people who were.
WHAT KIND of reputable police agency stops investigating because criminals won't talk to them? In the Bari case they never did investigate because they knew what they would find and they could not afford the exposure, especially not long after the FBI was caught in the act of trying to frame Dave Foreman, one of the founders of Earth First!
THE SUMMER OF LOVE. I missed it. Had to work. Truth to tell, the whole faux innocence of Flower Child-ism — the repellant Wavy Gravy being the archetype — was a minor irritant, especially in the face of the large political crimes underway at the time, and especially irresponsible among people who claimed to be "hip." Hip to what? I've always wondered.
THE LOCAL ANGLE here, too: The back-to-the-land movement that populated the logged-over outback of the Emerald Triangle was majorly inspired by the extraordinary levels of Bay Area street crime in the late 1960s running through the middle 1970s. The city had become comprehensively awful, and just up Highway 101 all the way to Ashland, land was cheap. The less energetic hippies never got past West Marin and West SoCo. The more enterprising made it to Mendo and Humboldt, while the truly intrepid kept on going to Trinity County.
ARGUING with people who don't know socialism from a peanut butter sandwich is a waste of time, and I wouldn't bother if we didn't hear some yobbo or other denouncing socialism all the time as the equivalent of the end times. We owe socialists for the scant social protections we have, beginning with the child labor laws and the eight-hour day. Of course we all know the horrors at work in the socialist hells of Sweden, Denmark, Norway, Canada, the UK, and all the other millions of people of people yearning to be free of single payer. Ask a Norwegian what he thinks of socialist polices and he'll tell you he lives for the day he can put his idle ten-year-olds back to work in the coal mines. Fox News and the rest of the armchair warriors blame socialism for the current state of Venezuela. The current president of Venezuela was democratically elected, and he is a socialist. He isn't doing well for a fact, but Venezuela was a very poor country to begin with, briefly benefitted under Chavez's socialist policies that Chavez funded out of inflated oil prices, but with those windfall billions gone with the crash of oil prices Venezuela is now headed for civil war as its owning classes unravel the social protections brought to them by Chavez's socialists, not Chavez's communists. There's a difference. Me, myself and I think we're headed for social chaos in this country, and many others, regardless of how their economies are organized, because industrial civ has reached its limits via the false and globally destructive capitalist assumption that unrestrained free enterprise can keep the human population up with the Kardashians, that no matter how many people there are they can all get more stuff endlessly. That's the thinking that's got us where we are — the brink of catastrophe. (It was heartening to see Jeremy Corbyn and the UK's Labour Party crush both the Blair-ites and the Tories in the recent elections in England. Apparently, young people, whose long-term prospects consist of hopelessness, turned out big time for Labour, just as young people here turned out for Bernie. Knowing who your true friends are is the beginning of wisdom.)
[Withdrawn by author]
ON LINE COMMENT OF THE DAY
The Democrats are shooting themselves in their collective foot over the “Russia hacked the election” story. The fact that no mention of exactly how they supposedly influenced the election has been put forth, not to mention no evidence being presented, has not escaped the more discerning members of the electorate. Or even the normally intelligent ones who are paying attention. With all the real problems that need to be addressed, the fact that the party is pushing what is self-evidently a tale told by idiots is inflicting severe damage on the party’s credibility among a very important constituency.
Five million fewer voters voted for Hillary than voted for Obama in 2008. I’m guessing that most of those 5 million simply stayed home, not being able to vote in good conscience for either major party candidate. If the Democrats keep it up, I predict another 5 million sitting out the 2020 election as well.
THE GOLDEN RULE PEACE BOAT just phoned. They have predicted bad weather and delayed the boat's arrival time until Tuesday afternoon. It had been scheduled to arrive in Noyo Harbor at the Wharf Restaurant on Monday. The Potluck is still on for Monday At 6 pm at Trinity Church Hall at E Redwood with members of the crew coming down early from Eureka for a presentation. Call 937-0334 or 206 992 6364 for info.
SUMMER OF LOVE CONCERT pits San Francisco against promoter
PROZAC NATION IS NOW THE UNITED STATES OF XANAX
DANGERS OF HORROR MOVIES
A man wrote to Alfred Hitchcock:
"Sir, After seeing 'Diabolique,' my daughter was afraid to take a bath. Now she has seen your 'Psycho' and is afraid to take a shower. What should I do with her?"
Hitchcock replied: "Send her to the dry cleaners."
Told by Roger Ebert in a review of Diabolique.
(Contributed by Louis Bedrock)
ODD THAT CURBED SF posts a story on Frank LLoyd Wright without mentioning the only building in SF he designed, probably because the story was written to be posted in Curbed's 15 different city editions.
Some views inside the building.
As a very young man, I slogged around the muddy construction site of the Wright-designed Marin Civic Center building:
(Rob Anderson, Courtesy, District5Diary)
I WAS IN THE EAST END OF LONDON (a working-class quarter) yesterday and attended a meeting of the unemployed. I listened to the wild speeches, which were just a cry for 'bread! bread!' and on my way home I pondered over the scene and I became more than ever convinced of the importance of imperialism... My cherished idea is a solution for the social problem, i.e., in order to save the 40,000,000 inhabitants of the United Kingdom from a bloody civil war, we colonial statesmen must acquire new lands to settle the surplus population, to provide new markets for the goods produced in the factories and mines. The Empire, as I have always said, is a bread and butter question. If you want to avoid civil war, you must become imperialists.
— Cecil Rhodes, 1895
TRUMP’S SYRIA BOMBING, AN IMPEACHABLE OFFENSE -- On KMEC Radio, Monday, June 12 at 1 pm
John Sakowicz interviews law professor and impeachment specialist Francis Boyle. Listen at 105.1 FM in Ukiah, CA. Or listen to the webstream at www.kmecradio.org
CBS News reports: “U.S. aircraft conduct strike on Syrian army convoy.”
Earlier this year, The Hill reported “Top aide: Obama worried about impeachment for Syria actions.”
Rep. Ted Lieu (D-Calif.) tweeted Thursday after initial reports of the strike: “If true, this is FRICKIN ILLEGAL. Trump does not have Congressional authorization to attack Syria, a country that has not attacked US.” He also tweeted: “Congress authorized President to use force in 2 cases: terrorists & Iraq. @realDonaldTrump has NO AUTHORIZATION to attack Syrian regime.”
FRANCIS BOYLE, email@example.com
Boyle is professor of international law at the University of Illinois College of Law. He said today: “The U.S. strike clearly violates the War Powers Resolution, the War Powers Clause of the United States Constitution and the United Nations Charter. It’s impeachable.
“These so-called deconfliction zones are de facto partitions of Syria in violation of its territorial sovereignty and political independence.”
The Hill report states: “President Obama’s deputy national security adviser says in a new interview that the threat of impeachment ‘was a factor’ in Obama’s decision not to pursue a tougher intervention policy in Syria.
“‘We actually had Congress warning us against taking action without congressional authorization, which we interpreted as the president could face impeachment,’ Ben Rhodes told Politico Magazine.
“When asked to elaborate, the president’s adviser said that Republicans, including then-Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio), made it clear that premature military action without congressional approval would be unconstitutional.”
A READER WRITES: Good Old Point Arena: It might be time to run the Debra Keipp December 30, 2014 letter again in the future; The City Council met again last week to talk affordable housing, and from what I heard, several folks up and walked out. I should have been there. There are reports that the City is going to start waiving sewer hook up fees and water fees are going to be "free because it is the law." Or so councilwoman Barbara Burkey claims. Yeah, there is a law recently passed with other supporting legislation that provides for Low Income Residential Assistance, but the State Water Board is working on the details. Anyhoo, from what I hear, the meeting was a "joke."
* * *
PINT ARENA'S NEW CITY MANAGER
(AVA, December 31, 2014)
by Debra Keipp
Last week I visited Point Arena City Hall because the new City Manager and secretary weren't answering their phones. I asked for a few chapters out of the City's Muni-Code, and had a few more questions about the City's dormant (what used to be called) Low-Income Housing Build-out Component. (It appears most of the low-income component has been aborted and it is now dubbed Senior Housing with only a few low-income units in the plans.)
The new Point Arena City Manager job has been filled by Phil Vince, who accepted a job that years ago should have been upgraded for Fred Patten, our old City Clerk under Mayor Dahlhoff. Patten held the City together for about a quarter of a century working in the capacity of City Clerk under both Mayors Earlygrow and Dahlhoff. Patten babysat Dahlhoff through her myopic unsuccessful attempt to rend ownership of Point Arena Water Works from owner, Bill Hay, which ended in Dahlhoff charging homeowners and water users for the entirety of the lawyers' fees generated by Dahlhoff for both sides in the case. (Dahlhoff's lawyers fees which water users are still paying as part of their water bills.) Dahlhoff proved too skimpy with her old friend to offer Patten the job re-classification and pay raise befitting his most excellent skills; holding together, as it goes in a small constituency like Point Arena, two handfuls of inexperienced Council members and Planners. Eventually he left his job, ill and discouraged. Since then Point Arena City Hall has been flapping in the breeze. A good deal of cluelessness could be attributed to the years since Fred Patten's resignation; leading up to recommendations made by the Mendocino County Grand Jury to hire an actual “City Manager” to guide City Council, instead of just another clerk.
New Point Arena City Manager, Phil Vince, most recently worked in Martinez and lived in Moraga, taking a year sabbatical before being hired recently to oversee Point Arena City Hall. While, according to election law, the City Council members must all live within the City limits to run for elected office, employee Vince, and one of the Planners, may live outside the City limits. There are no new places to live inside Point Arena's City boundaries, as build-out has been discouraged here throughout all of the Earlygrow and Dahlhoff campaigns amounting to about the last 25 years. Point Arena suffers a surplus of vacant, unpermitted dwellings as a result. Dahlhoff only recently released her stranglehold on Point Arena's no growth stance to bring Point Arena to the status of “Monument”, all of a sudden. Previous to that and presently, there remains no economic development plan within the City limits, even with promises of such after the dedication of the Coastal Monument. The population of Point Arena today remains at only around 500. It can't grow much larger than that, for lack of legal living accommodations within the City of sensitive habitat located entirely within the California Coastal Zone.
Point Arena sits within one square mile, with only about 200-odd registered voters. The maximum for a good voter turn-out is around 80-88 votes. Votes rarely number more than 90.
In speaking with Mr. Vince in the cold concrete and cinder block building which is Point Arena City Hall, he sat in his office working in a substantial, thickly-lined yellow hooded rain slick and acknowledged, “There's something not quite right about getting elected to public office with only 88 votes. It's usually unheard of... But that's the way it goes in a City the size of Point Arena.”
I asked Vince straight up, “What's the tax revenue of the Koogles' Huntley House, where our new Mayor lives illegally, which as potential tax revenue for the City, mostly sits empty of businesses these many years? And, why then can Mayor Koogle remain on Council when he doesn't legally live within the City limits, having lied on his election application papers, even though somehow, he can afford to keep buying unlivable, unpermitted properties which sit completely or mostly vacant in need of permits and renovation within the City limits?”
Mr Vince: “We don't even have enough officials for a Planning Commission. We have Council acting as Planners now...”
DKPA: “I know of the general lack of interest... You're saying we should be admitting Council applicants in from outside the City limits to hold office in Point Arena. According to what law? (Senator Roderick Wright was convicted of voter fraud for lying about his true residency in voter registration papers.) What's up with NO enforcement? Is it time for re-annexation so the City can legally draw applicants from outside the City limits?”
Vince looked nagged and incredulous as he said, “That's a law that is frequently broken and no one bothers to go after the offenders most of the time...” Episodic enforcement interludes are what they're called in Point Arena. (Mr. Vince is hog-tied anyway, until he passes his new employee probationary period.)
To which I responded with another satirical tact altogether. “Well, then, can you look at it this way? Why then didn't the City advertise the one seat on Council to anyone outside the City limits who can grow their 700 lbs of pot, enabling them to afford not to hold down another source of employment while living within the City limits like the rest of us poor suckers without virtue of “economic development”. Then, with untaxed pot money generated outside the City limits, buy up three parcels of property – oddly all unlivable, unrentable and dilapidated buildings – but within the City limits nonetheless, most all of which generate little, if any tax revenue for the City of Point Arena? All without filing for ANY permits, let alone the proper California Coastal Commission development permits. Let's open it up and make it available to every elected seat – not just the one guy who lied and got away with it. The City should be offering the position to more than just that one liar who shouldn't even be voting in the City limits, - that's voter fraud - who loop-holed it with his illegal living address on his election papers, which is still enforceable by law. But you tell me following the law is optional according to the City of Point Arena? City Hall gets to decide with impunity who gets to break the law? Does City Council draw straws, or decide by personal preference, overlooking their “friends” entirely in facilitating avoidance of all permitting processes. That lack of equality in enforcement just sends more complaints to Grand Jury... once again - to referee inadequacies by the City of Point Arena, who should simply follow the law instead of bending it to the breaking point only for “friends of City Hall”.”
We also touched briefly on nepotism by Council, Planners and employees of the City. Apparent in the nepotism of the City's hired relatives, errr aaaa... employees, Jean Nadell, former County Counsel, now Judge, came to City Hall to educate Gualala's GMAC members, Point Arena City Planners and Councilpersons, regarding conflict of interest, informing that they couldn't be married or related, and sit on these boards or as employees, simultaneously. That's when Mr. Dahlhoff, the former Mayor's husband, negated and argued with Nadell, regardless of the law she quoted. See my point about Point Arena's entitled conflicted political mindset?
“You want a letter from the City saying the current Mayor's “true residence” is not even a legal live space? I have evidence of that on City letterhead provided by the fired City Clerk. Wanta see it?”
Koogles' Huntley House is not a legal live space, according to the City of Point Arena. Never was. Koogle is guilty of fraud, therefore, as he rented it under that falsity, to at least two renters as a legal live-work space, before moving into the building himself. Can't we legally open City Council seats in Point Arena to everyone, in or outside the City limits, since it already seems to be a kind of unspoken broken law, anyway? We might at least get a better chance at a qualified candidate interested in prioritizing more than just a skate park typically for, and narrowly used by one gender – adolescent males.”
I added that I didn't want to overburden Mr. Vince with re-annexation in his new job, but that would be the most sensible for a voter constituency languishing at 88 votes, under annual scrutiny by the Mendocino County Grand Jury. Re-annexation could open up the already stifled boundaries of “Pint” Arena from Iversen to Mountain View and up to Ten Mile from the Ocean – or, follow the fog bank. That might at least give us a voter population of a few thousand... a much larger tax base, not to mention maybe some folks who'd like to run for office with some business acumen. Point Arena has at least a dozen vacated, deconstructed buildings and/or business spaces presently; both residential and commercial – most absolutely uninhabitable, earning no taxable income for the City of Point Arena, with nowhere for a new constituency to live in a city not requiring building permits and/or improvements, beginning with its Councilpersons.
I advised Mr. Vince to get the City Hall locks changed or re-keyed to eliminate the extra subterfuge, after already having had the City's office records sacked for incineration since Fred Patten ran City Hall. Before searching for the Muni-Codes, I informed Mr. Vince that the office secretary, himself, and the emergency services director for the City (who it turns out, is also Mr. Vince), are suppose to be the only three designatees with keys to City Hall's office. Not even the Mayor or Councilpersons are to have keys to City Hall. He blew it off telling me the locks had been changed by the previous interim City Manager, Tyson. I then asked Mr. Vince if I could buy a copy of Chapters 14 through 18 of the City's Muni-Code.
We went into the inner office in search of the Muni-Code binder for chapters 14-18. We found that chapters 14 and 18 are missing. These are the specific chapters that relate to the other Grand Jury Complaint a few constituents are filing on one other of Point Arena's City Council members who, for the last four-plus years, has been living without proper sewer, water, dwelling, or permits; in violation of Point Arena land use issues on sensitive habitat, which qualifies most of Point Arena within the City limits.
“Hmmmm...” I said, “Look there. The pertinent Muni-Codes: missing. I'll be damned. ...and just the very chapters pertaining to your other illegally-lodged Councilperson's California Development Permit, residency, and land use issues living in that uninhabitable garage without City sewer hook-up down on Point Arena Creek!”
To which Mr. Phil Vince, new hire City Manager, responded, “You could be right about those keys.”