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Mendocino County Today: February 20, 2012

JOHN LEWALLEN, independent candidate for US Congress in California’s new Northcoast Second Congressional District, cordially invites the public to his formal Declaration of Candidacy on Thursday, February 23, at 1pm, at the Mendocino County Elections Department on Low Gap Road in Ukiah. Lewallen, 69, lives in Philo, and owns and operates the Mendocino Sea Vegetable Company with his wife, Barbara. A well-known local political activist, John Lewallen is campaigning to support local livelihood and healthy environment, promote public health, end suicidal military spending, and end the prohibition of cannabis to develop a world-class cannabis products industry. For more information, visit the website

DIAPER DEPOT launches emergency location in Boonville. Diapers now available at Anderson Valley Family Resource Center. The Mendocino Diaper Depot, a project of the Children’s Action Committee of Mendocino County, now has cloth and disposable diapers available for families in need at the Anderson Valley Family Resource Center in Boonville. Diapers are available in emergency situations in sizes newborn to six, but sizes may be limited. “We know, especially around the beginning of the month, how tight funds can be for families,” Ashley Bergen, Children’s Action Committee coordinator said. “Our goal with the emergency sites is to help those who run out of diapers before payday and have to choose between buying diapers or food or paying other bills.” Anderson Valley Resource Center is located at 12300 Anderson Valley Way in Boonville. The Diaper Depot was launched in October 2011 and gives out diapers as an incentive for parents to attend parenting, GED and life-skills classes at local family resource centers. The program has been successful since its inception, spiking attendance in classes, introducing over 30 parents into their classes.

DOUG MOSEL! The Mendocino Environmental Center, KMEC 105.1LP FM Community Radio, and the Mendocino Country Independent Newspaper presents “The Visionary Speaker Series” featuring Doug Mosel: The Politics of a Local Economy, February 24, 2012, Founder of the Mendocino Grain Project & Campaign Coordinator for Measure "H," Mendocino's Anti GMO Initiative. Doug Mosel is an activist and mainstay of our community, and he will be speaking at the Plowshares Community Room, Friday, February 24, from 7-10pm. The Anderson Valley based farmer is raising wheat in Mendocino County, a missing link in local food production. He is the founder of the Mendocino Grain Project, a local grain co-op which provides organic wheat, garbanzo beans, and wheat flour to its members, filling a badly needed gap in our local food security. He has a lot to say about the future of our food security in Mendocino County, as well as the Politics of a Local Economy. Don't miss this fascinating look at our community and its future. Tickets are on a sliding scale of $5 to $10. Plowshares is at 1346 South State Street in Ukiah. Proceeds benefit the Mendocino Environmental Center, KMEC 105.1 FM, and The Mendocino Country Independent.

SAVE OUR STATE PARKS! The California Department of Parks and Recreation (DPR) is holding public workshops across the state to find local partners to help keep parks open. DPR will present a “How To” explanation and pathway for all parties interested in forming partnerships for operating a state park. DPR has created a Partnership Workbook for Operating Agreements that outlines the guiding principles for partnership operations. It will be available at the workshops and is available online at the parks website at: The workshops in our region will be held as follows: February 23 – Fort Bragg: 9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., at the CV Starr Community Center, 300 South Lincoln Street, Conference Room 3. February 24 – Santa Rosa: 9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., Julliard Park, Church of One Tree Community Center, 492 Sonoma Avenue. These workshops will concentrate on the process for entering into partnership agreements for keeping parks open and will not be taking testimony on why certain parks were chosen for closure. If you are interested in receiving future updates on the status of state park closures. — Senator Noreen Evans

DIAZ UPDATE (from Chris Diaz’s parents): Attorney Rudy Taylor has offered to do Chris’ case pro-bono but would like us to raise as much money as we can in order to travel and board Dr. Courtney and any other expert witnesses to Texas. He has also arranged a small house for Chris and Nona to stay while waiting for his trial date on April 2nd 2012. Rudy is a strong advocate for individual rights, and is known in the community for his stance on the Cannabis issue. He is a breath of fresh air in this town. We have been successful in raising the collateral for the $168,000 bail to get Chris out of the Brown County jail and safe. Attorney Rudy Taylor and Chris’ mom drove to the jail and posted the bond before noon today. Rudy had called down to the jail and arranged everything to get him out ahead of time. When they arrived Rudy was told that Sheriff Grubbs had to approve Chris’ release as per “county policy.” Rudy called Sheriff Bobby Grubbs and he told Rudy “I just can’t let him go this weekend, I think he’ll run” Rudy argued that the Judge Ellis set the bond, that the bond was fulfilled, and that he (Grubbs) didn’t have the authority to deny his release. Grubbs said he would leave it up to the judge to decide (in a hearing), knowing full well that Monday is a holiday and the Judge is on his regular circuit in a different county on Tuesday. He argued of Chris’ health as the primary reason for getting him out, Grubbs still denied. Rudy’s final argument was that Grubbs was taking an inappropriate personal interest in the case that is complicating a man’s poor health. Grubbs reply was “He looks fine to me” and went on to complain that Chris wasn’t taking the medication the emergency room had prescribed him. Rudy had to explain to Grubbs the reason Chris wasn’t taking the drugs was because they were the same drugs that were prescribed to him just three days before his lungs collapsed in 2007. Judge Ellis has a policy in which he will not have ex-parte communication with attorneys. This leaves Rudy to travel to a different county on Tuesday to file an emergency writ with Judge Ellis in order to get Chris out. Today is Saturday. Sheriff Bobby Grubbs has his own policy. He will not allow his deputies to release bonds over a certain amount without his personal approval and signature. Last year Grubbs did the same thing at $40k. In June of 2010, right after they arrested Chris, Grubbs told the newspaper Chris was a flight risk, mandating the full $40,000 bail to be paid before release, we didn’t have it and Chris spent 80 days in the Brownwood jail. Grubbs’ only reason was because Chris was from California. When we finally were able to come with $5k and the $80k property last year and posted the bond, Sheriff Grubbs refused to let Chris out for two days. He waited until Chris’ 21st birthday to let him out. This year, we come again full faith on the outrageous bail, this time Chris has been very sick and again Grubbs has denied his release, outside of the law.

Sunday Feb 19, 2012. — This morning Rudy Taylor called Sheriff Grubbs, at home, to question his legal authority for denying Chris’ release and to see if he had changed his mind. Rudy told us Grubbs could not state any legal authority to deny Chris’ release and stated “the judge will have to make me do it.” Which means, in court, on Tuesday. Rudy Taylor said he will be filing an emergency writ in Mills County first thing Tuesday morning to have Judge Ellis order Sheriff Bobby Grubbs to follow the law. Grubbs has taken a personal interest in destroying our family from the onset. He has gone to the newspaper and repeatedly attacked us to discredit Chris, and Medical Cannabis in this small town. He's gone way over the line this time. The judge set ridiculously high bonds at the request of the DA, and they have been met. We have hired a lawyer, and we have successfully paid to get him out. The Sheriff wont let him go. Grubbs said he has "training" on Tuesday and "wont be around". Implying that he "wont be around" on Tuesday to let Chris go even after the Judge orders it.

REALTOR Thomas Stone writes: The SF Chronicle "Covered" this in their usual style. "No big deal" according to them. It got better coverage on the web at "Naked Capitalism" and at "Credit Slips." I'm a Real Estate broker who has been screaming about this for years and who naively thought that proof that hundreds if not thousands of San Franciscans had had their homes stolen would be considered big news. The word is out that Kammie Harris got promised a seat on the US Supreme Court for going along with the (Not yet signed) "Mortgage Settlement." If so she will be a worthy peer of Clarence "Long Dong" Thomas.

CHRISTINA HALEY Writes: This is is to ask other people of the northcoast to take a moment to observe some of the strange and unusual changes and anomalies taking place in nature. For instance, my neighbor had an iris plant flower in full bloom for Christmas during the frizzing cold. Next door my friend’s lilac bush is showing signs of spring buds? A friend and I went out to Usal beach after the first long awaited rainstorm. We found a patch of daffodils in full bloom near the beach. Then we noticed a patch of wild raspberries had small berries forming, and next to it we discovered a blackberry bush full of white blooms soon to become berries? This is mid-January! What’s up? The spookiest thing of all was the 14-legged large starfish we found while exploring the tide pools. We took a picture, than left the starfish alive and well. Now I feel compelled to ask others to share their sightings or things observed in nature that seem out of synch and just plain strange. I will log your reports and depending on the information I receive, if it’s compelling enough, I will share the data collected with this newspaper. Please call Christina Haley, (707) 349-3912.

IS WEIRD WEATHER making things frizz?

People don’t seem to know why that is.

Earth’s warming tomb

leads to more bloom and gloom

And the primary suspect’s Big Biz.

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