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Mendocino County Today: Wednesday, June 28, 2023

Warming Begins | Paul Dolan | Ed Notes | Cumulonimbus | Illegal Cultivation | Salmon BBQ | GJ Report | Manchester Dunes | Clueless MCHCD | Parade Route | Dam Removal | Book Juggler | 1906 Wedding | Name Petitions | DJ Sister | Skatepark Fundraiser | Yesterday's Catch | Money Worms | Building Blahs | Gun Laws | Cat Training | Paper Routes | Cocktail D'Amour | U.S. Congress | Ukraine | Underwear Salesman | Texas Heat | Crow Bar | Earth Wobble

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INTERIOR TEMPERATURES WILL WARM up this week with triple digit heat expected late in the week and into the weekend. Meanwhile, onshore winds will keep low clouds and patchy fog locked onto the coast, mainly north of Cape Mendocino. Greater potential for clearing is expected each day through the week. (NWS)

STEPHEN DUNLAP (Fort Bragg): A foggy 51F on the coast this Humpday morning. I am sticking with gradually sunnier days but forecasting the fog is humbling task, maybe by the weekend?

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From a fourth-generation wine family, Dolan is remembered as the innovative president of fetzer wines and his own Dark Horse Winery on Old River Road between Ukiah and Hopland. He died at his home in Healdsburg.

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4th Of July Parade In Mendocino: The Chamber of Commerce is still accepting applications if you wish to be in the parade. Call 707-961-6300 to get an application or go to our website at We need to have all applications back by this Friday, June 30th.

A READER alerted us to a recent article in Popular Mechanics entitled “The Unrelenting Roar” about the terrible noise generated by crypto-currency computer farms in rural areas across the country.

Presumably, the reader saw parallels between the computer noise and the wine industry’s wind machines which keep Anderson Valley residents awake for weeks at a time during the spring and fall when temperatures cool off. 

The victims of the the crypto-din get it all the time, 24/7, making it even worse than the wind fans. 

The impact of such noise shouldn’t require any more documentation than the personal experience of the neighbors. But the author of the Popular Mechanics piece cites European research that found that “every five decibel inrease over a baseline of 45 decibels for a 24 span was associated with a 34% jump in heart attacks, strokes and other cardiovascular issues.” And, “Some field research shows that about a third of birds may completely leave an area because of noise pollution with major ecological consequences.” 

Not that any of this would matter to local grape growers who think, as Ted Bennett of Navarro Vineyards said a few years ago when the issue arose locally: “My grapes are more important than your sleep.”

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THE GREAT HOBO & MONEY MAGNET TRAIL (The money and hobos will happen here and there; the trail won't)


Amenities along the Great Redwood trail may include trailheads, parking, restrooms, water access, kayak launches, campgrounds, seating, viewpoints, public art, and more…

The Great Redwood Trail will be managed and maintained by a variety of regional and local public agencies and recreation-oriented non-profits. [None named.]

Adjacent property owners’ desires for privacy and protection along the Great Redwood Trail will vary by landowner and land use. The project team will work with adjacent landowners to understand their concerns and, as applicable, identify practical design solutions for the trail corridor as part of the Master Planning process. [I.e., not addressed.]

The Project Team will coordinate with local law enforcement and fire departments to inform safety and emergency procedures. Some ideas currently include law enforcement patrols, emergency call boxes, fencing, and other access control features. [“Ideas”? Which law enforcement agencies have agreed to participate?]

The Project Team will coordinate with local fire departments to inform fire safety along the trail. [“Inform”?]

The Master Plan will include a comprehensive strategy that outlines the legal and practical tools available to prevent or minimize camping in undesignated locations. Collaborating with housing and social service agencies to address this issue has been successful on this and other rail-trails trails in California. “Lessons learned” will be included in design guidelines and the Great Redwood Trail’s operations and maintenance plan. [Translation: whatever happens happens.]

The Great Redwood Trail Scammers have had over two years to work on this stuff with millions of dollars and all they’ve got are these vague generalities which only point to problems wherever little pieces of the Trail may be.

(Mark Scaramella)

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Storm Cloud formation NE Ukiah (Jeff Goll)

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Over the past few years, we have seen a down-turn in the number of illegal marijuana cultivations sites in Mendocino County. We continue to make progress however this doesn't mean we are ahead of the problem. 

Illegal cultivation continues to be a huge problem for our county and continues to bring organized crime, violence, and environmental damage. The problems were once hidden in our dense forests however following the passage of proposition 64 in 2018, these problems came to our front doors.

During the week of 06/19/2023 the Mendocino County Sheriff's Marijuana team completed several investigations in partnership with the California Department of Fish and Wildlife. We also received assistance in personnel and equipment from the Trinity County Sheriff's Office, the Humboldt County Sheriff's Office the California State Water Board, and the California State Department of Cannabis Control. 

Search warrants were executed on 11 properties. In total our teams eradicated 26,039 plants. Seized 5,520 pounds of processed marijuana, and 5 firearms. Also seized was $14,900.00 in cash under asset forfeiture laws. There were 81 violations of the California Fish and Game code which included 12 water diversions and 1 illegally taken black tail deer. 

Investigative reports will be submitted to the District Attorney for prosecution on these cases. 

My priorities for marijuana enforcement remain the same as previous years. Grow sites which are associated with drug trafficking organizations, violence and human trafficking, trespass grow sites and grow sites which cause environmental degradation continue to be our top priorities. 

I am often asked why we are still dealing with marijuana following the passage of Proposition 64. I'm afraid this question shows a naïve approach to the human capacity for greed. Many people had a belief legalization would remove crime from the equation. The truth is many of the legislative measures enacted were simply inadequate to stop the problems to come. 

I continue to receive calls and correspondence on a weekly basis regarding the illegal grow sites, armed individuals and environmental crimes. 

The interface of rural to suburban neighborhoods with illegal marijuana cultivations has been an eye opener for many of our communities. 

Last year we investigated two rolling shootouts between vehicles involved in marijuana robberies. The collective patience within our communities continues to wear thin for bad actors with no intentions of being good neighbors, good stewards to the environment or good human beings. This problem didn't appear overnight, and it won't be solved overnight. 

Drug trafficking organizations are not one trick ponies. Once a footing is established, these organizations bring fentanyl, methamphetamine, human trafficking, and violence. If we don't deal with these issues the problem will continue to expand. 

The aforementioned reasons are why we continue to combat this even though the penalties for the bad behaviors have been largely removed.

As we continue working through these problems, I am hopeful our representatives in state government will continue to listen to the voices of rural communities. If we all work together we will see an end to these issues and hopefully we can move beyond where we are today. I look forward to a day when marijuana enforcement is a thing of the past, however we will not see that happen until the crimes associated with illegal cultivations have stopped. If we all work together we can make that goal a reality. 

Thank you

Sheriff Matt Kendall.

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Three Comments

[1] I have a little food for thought here. How much of the explosion in the marijuana industry came from a direct support of the media. The music videos glorifying weed, cash, ass, money, drugs and thuggish behavior. Facebook posts, Tiktok posts, IG Etc. A lot of times historically if you weren’t exposed to something you had no knowledge of something. With the advent of mass media and advertisement the message has spread globally.

[2] The rapid expansion of the marijuana industry here began long before Facebook or Tiktok. The Emerald Triangle’s reputation even pre-dates music videos. Just like alcohol prohibiton a century ago motivated people to set up stills anywhere they thought they could get away with it, the criminalization of pot created an oportunity for people to set up grows and make some relatively easy money. What happened next was an entirely predictable cycle of growth until the whole industry collapsed under the weight of its own success.

[3] Nancy Reagan turned a lot of our kids on to weed. She and Ron were more effective than Tim Leary was 15 years earlier with LSD. Just say no. No to what? DARE you!

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UNDERPERFORMING, UNDERSTAFFED, AND UNDERPAID: Grand Jury’s Findings on Mendocino County’s Family and Children’s Services

by Sarah Reith

The most recent Grand Jury report about the dire conditions at Mendocino County’s Family and Children’s Services division came out earlier this month. The report warns that understaffing, specifically the lack of personnel with proper experience and education, is a leading factor in the county’s low performance metrics, compared to state averages. While the report notes that “Understaffing does not appear to be related to funding issues,” it does appear to hamper timely investigations, leading to a work environment that former staff have described as “hostile” and “toxic.”…

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South Manchester Dunes (Jeff Goll)

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by Malcolm Macdonald

On February 23rd, with two members absent, the Mendocino Coast Health Care District (MCHCD) Board of Directors heard an emergency agenda item. The bottom line for this item was that the board treasurer, Jade Tippett, wanted approval to send $1,095,395 to the Department of Health Care Services (DHCS) as part of an intergovernmental transfer (IGT).

An intergovernmental transfer (IGT) is a method in which local governments and public hospitals can transfer money to help fund the Medicaid program. IGTs received are then used to draw down funds from the federal government as “match” funding to support the Medicaid program.

For all payments made through a Medicaid program, a certain percentage comes from the state and the remainder comes from the federal government. The amount collected in state funds (IGTs) is then matched by the federal funds. In past IGT transactions made by MCHCD the amount put into the IGT system has come back to the district several months later almost two fold.

Mr. Tippett, the MCHCD Board Treasurer was quite excited about this item in that the time for payments into the IGT system had supposedly passed, but he shared verbally that he had contacted someone at DHCS who would allow a slightly tardy transfer of funds if the board approved the action that night. After a brief discussion, motion and vote, the chair (Lee Finney), treasurer (Tippett), and secretary (Susan Savage) of the MCHCD Board voted to transfer $1,095,395 of public funds. According to bank statements acquired later, Tippett, the MCHCD treasurer, sent a wire transfer the next day, February 24th, to DHCS for the full amount requested, $1,095,395. Approximately 20% of that goes directly to DHCS and apparently stays there, so one can see why DHCS would be willing to give MCHCD a grace period beyond the February 17th deadline expressed in documents related to this case.

As noted above, the IGT system is essentially a way to get back some of the money hospitals lose through Medicaid. Hold onto your hats here, we need to quote from the document attached to the IGT transfer the three MCHCD Board members took action on. There's lots of healthcare financial jargon to wade through, but you are going to want to refer back to it later. Here goes:

“The funds transferred by the GOVERNMENTAL FUNDING ENTITY [In this case MCHCD, and, yes, it is in all caps in the official document.] pursuant to Section 1 and Exhibit I of this Agreement shall be used to fund the non-federal share of Medi-Cal Managed Care actuarially sound capitation rates described in section 14301.4(b)(4) of the Welfare and Institutions Code as reflected in the contribution PMPM and rate categories reflected in Exhibit 1. The funds transferred shall be paid, together with the related Federal Financial Participation, by DHCS to HEALTH PLAN(S) as part of HEALTH PLAN(S)' capitation rates for the service period of January 1, 2021through December 31, 2021, in accordance with section 14301.4 of the Welfare and Institutions Code.”

I know, your eyes may have glazed over somewhere around “actuarially sound capitation.” Let's simplify and get down to the important takeaways. First important point: “the service period of January 1, 2021 through December 31, 2021.”

Besides the date, the word with the most weight in there was “service.” To receive money back from the IGT system one had to provide Medicaid or Medi-Cal services during calendar year 2021.

Herein lies the problem. The Mendocino Coast Health Care District (MCHCD) ceased providing medical services on July 1, 2020 when it entered into a lease agreement in which an outside entity, Adventist Health, assumed the role of day to day healthcare provider. Thus, the healthcare district had/has no right to expect funds from the IGT system for calendar year 2021. That makes the transfer of $1,095,035 of public funds a very serious mistake on the part of the MCHCD Board Treasurer who urged the action and the two other board members (chair Finney and secretary Savage) who willingly went along. The board treasurer possessed the document quoted above. It was his responsibility, and that of the other two voting board members, to read the document. The notation about services provided between January 1, 2021 through December 31, 2021 appears near the top of page three of the document, with, as noted earlier, several phrases in all CAPS.

To not read even this one portion of the document carefully is a grave public disservice committed by the the treasurer, Tippett, in particular and the board chair, Finney, who was cc-ed on the emails between Tippett and DHCS, so one has every reason to believe Finney had as much knowledge as Tippett about what was involved in the IGT process, including the ability to read the places in which the service period being covered was calendar year 2021. The legal ramifications of their actions should be left to others, but this level of incompetence by board members elected to protect the public's financial interests is unacceptable. The MCHCD Board Chair and Treasurer need to resign.

In preparing this article, this writer and a small number of others, who grew suspicious of the IGT transfer after gaining access to the documents Tippett and Finney possessed at the time they voted to transfer $1,095,395 of public funds, speculated on who these two public servants would attempt to throw under the bus once the jig was up. That answer coming up, but first research shows that at some point in relatively late May (three months after the $1,095,395 was transferred out of a Mendocino Coast Health Care District bank account), Tippett contacted an official within the Capitated Rates Development Division of the California Department of Health Care Services (DHCS). He asked when MCHCD might receive the expected near doubling of $912,733 (DHCS would keep 20% off the top of the $1,095,395 Tippett, Finney, and Savage voted to transfer on February 23rd). This shows that MCHCD Treasurer Tippett did not know how the IGT process works. Seemingly, Tippett was then informed that any payment back to MCHCD would be handled by Partnership HealthPlan (“Partnership” for fans of abbreviated titles). Your average taxpaying citizen might justifiably question how Tippett, as MCHCD Treasurer, could transfer over a million dollars of public funds without knowing precisely who would be paying it back.

On May 24th, Tippett emailed the Deputy Chief Financial Officer at Partnership. In the email Tippett stated, “I’m following up on the Intergovernmental Transfer the Mendocino Coast Health Care District made through DHCS on February 24, 2023, of $1,095,395. 

“Preparing the District Budget for FYE2024, it would be helpful to know when the return would happen and an estimate of the total amount of the return. 

“If you could give me some idea of an amount and a date, I would greatly appreciate it.”

Three months after wiring $1.095,395 of public funds, Tippett had not read or understood the section of the DHCS document that included, “the service period of January 1, 2021 through December 31, 2021” when the district was no longer providing medical services.

But members of the public had. At least one contacted both DHCS and Partnership in an effort to ascertain if these entities were aware of the situation. Either they were aware or had been made aware. On June 6th, the Deputy Chief Financial Officer at Partnership emailed Tippett, “Based upon our review of our contract with your organization for this program and on the basis that Mendocino Coast Healthcare District did not provide Medi-Cal services during the CY 2021 period we do not believe we have a mechanism to issue payment for the CY 2021 range period. Our contract requires Medi-Cal services for Partnership’s Medi-Cal members to have been rendered during the calendar year 2021 period.”

So now the MCHCD board meeting agenda for June 29th contains a possible resolution aimed at recouping the $1,095,395. The resolution does not make clear the amounts to be recovered from Partnership HealthPlan as opposed to an amount to be retrieved from DHCS. This proposed resolution also attempts to throw the prior board's treasurer under the bus, “WHEREAS this AGREEMENT was memorialized in DHCS CONTRACT # 21-10228, signed on October 6, 2023, by then Treasurer John Redding on behalf of the District and Rafael Davtian, Division Chief, Capitated Rates Development Division, on December 11, 2022, on behalf of DHCS.”

While paperwork signed by former MCHCD Treasurer Redding, on October 6, 2022, does exist, Redding never took the document to the 2022 MCHCD Board for approval. The other four board members did not place any IGT items on their agendas in the entire second half of 2022. In short, this IGT never traveled beyond Redding's desk. Did Tippett or Chair Finney stop to think, 'Hey, the previous board didn't act on this.' Apparently, Tippett and Finney did not stop to wonder why. They rushed it through as an emergency board action item. The two members of the board who were absent at that point didn't get to see it.

MCHCD may or may not retrieve all or part of the $1,095,395 of public funds dispersed, but the level of fiduciary irresponsibility demonstrated by Tippett and Finney, who possessed the documents necessary to tell them to hold off on the transfer, is mind boggling.

This is the same duo who adamantly supported their handpicked interim counsel when he vehemently declared that members of the prior board would have no reason to have HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) related documents in their email accounts. This in the face of what is obvious to any semi-regular observer of the prior board, that two of them are long time medical providers with the potential for numerous examples of confidential patient information within their emails.

It took board discussion, public input, a motion, second, and vote on a resolution to name Finney the administrator of the district's email accounts. A month or two later it came to light that somehow Tippett was also an administrator of the email accounts, without any board discussion or resolution. 

In addition, in a narrative written by Tippett, and approved by Finney, Tippett made the direct accusation that the former MCHCD Board chair gave administrator privileges for the district's email accounts to the one carryover member from the prior board to the present one. The problem with that is it didn't happen. Tippett fabricated the lie and Finney approved sending it out to the public.

In other words this duo of Tippett and Finney are not only clueless when it comes to transferring more than a million dollars of public funds, without knowing whether it was a legitimate transfer or who would pay it back, but they are also sneaky as all get out. Not suitable traits for elected officials.

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For the last several years, I’ve been optimistically sharing that if everything fell perfectly into place, the Eel River Dams could be out of the river by 2030. We’ve just learned that my optimistic timeline may turn out to be realistic. People like you who keep our bills paid deserve huge credit.

Friends of the Eel River has consistently held strong positions, made strategic moves, and played critical roles driving toward dam removal.

For years we’ve exposed serious dam safety concerns present at Scott Dam. We’ve commissioned studies, reviewed and cataloged dam safety documents, and decried the opaque nature of classifying dam safety documents. And we’ve written to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, PG&E, and a range of elected officials with our concerns that PG&E was ignoring significant dam safety issues at Scott Dam. This spring, in response to a seismic risk study of Scott Dam ordered by the California Division of Safety of Dams (DSOD), PG&E announced it would never again completely fill the Lake Pillsbury reservoir.

Along with a group of conservation and fishing industry advocates, we’ve brought federal suits against both FERC and PG&E for violations of the Endangered Species Act. These actions articulate numerous harms both Scott and Cape Horn Dams cause to listed species. Together, both lawsuits underscore the need for expedited dam removal.

And finally, we’ve dedicated countless hours to developing clear, factual, scientifically accurate explanations of the project, its operations and effects, how it harms the ecosystem, and the unmatched opportunity that dam removal offers for recovery. We do our best to address the tide of misinformation, to speak truth to power in seeking an end to injustices the Potter Valley Project has forced upon Eel River communities over the last century.

Compared to other dam removal projects, it feels like a free-flowing Eel River is just around the corner. But don’t get me wrong, correcting a century of injustice is an uphill battle all the way to the end. We need to keep up this steady pace to ensure that the fish make it home before it’s too late.

Of course, as I hear many wise people say in this era of removing barriers, dam removal is just the beginning.

We also need to make sure that endangered species like the Northern California summer steelhead have the full protection of both the state and federal laws to help them recover. In 2021 we succeeded in listing the southernmost run of summer steelhead as Endangered under the California Endangered Species Act. Soon we will re-petition the federal government to secure a similar listing with the National Marine Fisheries Service.

Of course, there must be sufficient flow and quality habitat throughout the watershed to allow for our native fish to thrive. This is why we brought suit against Humboldt County, to ensure that groundwater use in the lower river is appropriately managed when dry conditions require curtailment. And to protect the public trust values in a flowing Eel River.

There’s much work to be done to catch up on decades of neglected road maintenance. We are continuing to work with Humboldt County, using our Cannabis Mitigation grant program, to fund sediment reduction projects in sensitive salmonid habitat.

Finally, we need to make sure everyone can access this wonderful river! How else are we to continue cultural practices that have shaped the river and its people since the beginning of time, or to encourage new generations to fall in love with the river? Through our work with the Great Redwood Trail Friends and partnering with allies like the Wiyot Tribe and local fishing and boating communities, we are protecting historical river access points and identifying appropriate locations for new access.

In April American Rivers listed the Eel as one of the ten Most Endangered Rivers in the nation. This listing is given to rivers at a crossroads, with real opportunity to solve a pressing threat. We are thankful for this opportunity to draw some much-needed attention to our very special watershed, and to rally widespread support for starting the long process of recovery for the Eel, its fisheries, and our communities.

For the fish,

Alicia Hamann, Executive Director

Friends of the Eel

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JEFF GOLL: I went down to the Book Juggler this morning and found owner Chris (30 years and going) confident about the survival of the cadre of independent brick and mortar bookstores. His partner Greta then arrived from a Willits City Council meeting and I was able to get these photos (with house dog Zeus). The third photo is of a sign on the side of their store. The Book Juggler is a great place to be immersed in various forms of culture-a Willits highlight.

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June 27, 1906 - Miss Eva Josephine Milliken, the eldest daughter of Dr. and Mrs. J. W. Milliken, married James Charles Rice of Little River at the Main Street home of the bride’s parents (most recently, Didjeridoo Inn) at 10 o’clock in the morning. 

The South parlor bay window of the Milliken residence provided the perfect setting for the ceremony, which was attended by family of the bride and groom.

The front rooms of the home were decorated in a white and green color scheme, while the hallway was trimmed in green and the dining room was adorned in pink and green, all harmoniously beautiful to behold. Eva was handsomely attired in a gown of cream embroidered silk mulle trimmed with valenciennes lace. In her hair was a cluster of orange blossoms sent by friends from Los Angeles to symbolize health and good fortune. The groom wore conventional black attire.

Wedding portrait of James Charles and Eva (Milliken) Rice and taken on June 27, 1906

Eva’s sister Inez played the wedding march on the piano, and the bride and groom stood underneath a beautiful wedding bell made of white sweet peas and maiden hair ferns as they took their vows. Reverend J. S. Ross pronounced the words that made the happy couple husband and wife.

Following the ceremony, the wedding guests enjoyed a meal in the tastefully decorated dining room. Afterwards, a horse-drawn carriage driven by George A. Boyd of the Boyd & Daniels Livery Stable arrived, and the newly married couple left for their honeymoon. Showers of rice were thrown at the departing Rices, amid a wave of handkerchiefs and cheers of goodbye. George drove them to Ukiah where they took the train to San Francisco. They honeymooned for a month in Oregon and returned to their home in Little River at the end of July.

In addition to the bride’s parents James and Lizzie Milliken, the mother of the groom Caroline (Coombs) Rice, and the bride’s sisters, Inez, Sadie, Beth, and Faith Milliken, the guest list included Ann Stickney, Anna Milliken, Edna Milliken, Richard G. Coombs, Richard H. Coombs, Chester and Anna Flowers, Silas W. and Margaret Coombs, William B. and Emma Coombs, Nancy Perkins, and Callie Coombs.

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Dear Editor,

Grassroot organization "SAVE OUR TOWN'S NAME!" and "KEEP OUR SCHOOL'S NAMES! Protect and preserve the town name of Fort Bragg California, the school names and the town's history and heritage!

These organizations were formed when we discovered that a group called "Change Our Name" also known as CON, were attempting to change the name of our town Fort Bragg California and also the names of our Fort Bragg Schools. CON felt that if they could change the name of our schools then they could change the name of our town, Fort Bragg, California.

This is the story of the 4 1/2-month campaign to stop the "Change Our Name" (CON) agenda, which resulted in the school's determination that there would be no changes to the Fort Bragg School names and that the schools would remain named Fort Bragg schools. The Fort Bragg Unified School District issued an official letter indicating their decision to leave the school names unchanged. Save Our Name! and Save Our School's Names! were successful in their effort to preserve our historical school names and the long and proud history of our schools.

Our petitions continue to grow and as of 6/27 have 1613 supporters.

Keep The Name Of Schools Fort Bragg High School, Fort Bragg Middle School, District Names! Petition

Save The Name Of Our Town - Fort Bragg, California!! Petition

Thank you

Save Our Town! (SON) and Save Our School's Names!

John S. Lushenko Group Founder and Administrator,

Rus Jewett, Administrator,

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AV Skatepark Project Fall Fling Fundraiser

September 16th @ 3:30. AV Brewing Company (Boonville). Stellar line-up of local bands, yummy local food vendors, live auction and raffle! Stay tuned for details and advance ticket purchasing.

Volunteers needed! Please sign up here if you’re willing to help cover a shift at the event.

Raffle items needed! If you have any enticing items that you’re willing to donate to our raffle, please email our raffle coordinator at

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CATCH OF THE DAY, Tuesday, June 27, 2023

Andrade-Mendoza, Bolton, Clearwater, Delatorre

MIGUEL ANDRADE-MENDOZA, Laytonville. Loaded handgun-not registered owner, paraphernalia, failure to appear.

JOSHUA BOLTON, Willits. Battery with serious injury.

AKASHA CLEARWATER, Altaville/Fort Bragg. Disorderly conduct-alcohol, battery on peace officer, probation revocation.

MARIO DELATORRE, Ukiah. DUI, no license.

Fischer, Leyva, Nelson

TIMOTHY FISCHER, Disorderly conduct-drugs&alcohol.

JOSE LEYVA-ZAZUETA, Ukiah. Narcotics possession for sale, unlawful sexual intercourse with minor more than three years younger.

AMBER NELSON, Ukiah. Disorderly conduct-alcohol.

Nunez, Okerstrom, Perez, Powers

ENRIQUE NUNEZ-DAVILA, Covelo. Probation revocation.

RYAN OKERSTROM, Willits. Resisting. (Frequent flyer.)

PEDRO PEREZ-GUZMAN, Ferndale/Ukiah. Suspended license, probation revocation.

LOREN POWERS JR., Ukiah. Battery with serious injury. 

Reynoso, Stanley, Young

ELIZABETH REYNOSO, Ukiah. Parole violation.

CLINTON STANLEY, Willits. Assault with deadly weapon not a gun.

WILLIAM YOUNG, Woodland/Ukiah. Getting credit using someone else’s ID, failure to appear.

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Warm spiritual greetings,

Am sitting in front of computer #5 at the Ukiah Public Library at 1:14PM Pacific Time in sunny Ukiah, California. Not identified with the body nor the mind, Immortal Self I am! I am doing nothing of any importance in Mendocino County, and am therefore available for frontline radical environmental direct action. Down with capitalism, its insane industrialized war machine, and the humanity who are its slaves; worms in excretia only.

Craig Louis Stehr

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Remember when hotels, banks and office buildings were made to fit into a business district or neighborhood? They reflected and matched the nature of the areas they occupied. You could almost say “they had style.” Not so anymore. Most buildings nowadays look like they were designed by the same architects who created Kaiser Permanente medical offices. Glass, plastic, basic nothing pleasing to the eye. What happened? What’s next? The proposed new hotels in Petaluma (B Street and Petaluma Boulevard) and Cotati (Highway 116 and Old Redwood Redwood) and the multistory apartment building on East Cotati Avenue show no class, no excitement. Look at the basic blahs going up in Santa Rosa.

At least the Appellation Petaluma hotel would be in the center of Petaluma, but, to the eye, it doesn’t fit the area. The Cotati Hotel will be surrounded by Highway 101, a pocket shopping area, a coffee shop, Walgreens, a long walk to the “historic” downtown on cracked sidewalks, weeds and small worn-looking buildings.

I don’t know. It seems that creativity has gone out of the new architecture. Oh, wait. There is an open patch of ground. Let’s build something on it. We can use the same plans we used on …

Anthony Morgan


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The editors of the Press Democrat, Sat., June 10, “Newsom’s risky gambit on guns,” opposed Gov. Gavin Newson’s call to pass a Constitutional amendment to ban the sale assault style weapons, ban sales of any firearms to anyone under 21 years of age, pass universal background checks and pass so-called “red flag” laws. In effect, the editors want the nation to continue the bloody, murderous status quo, selling great numbers of weapons that that slaughter innocent victims in seconds. These present editors support the positions of the gun lobby in Congress.

Newsom is trying to change this awful tragic pattern of death due to guns. This past “Juneteenth” 3-day weekend killed 12 Americans. His aim is to reduce the gross excess of guns across America. To pass such an amendment, either Congress must act or 2/3s of the states would have to act. Congress isn’t likely to agree so this is the only alternative. We should support Gov. Newsom’s effort even if it may take decades. Otherwise it’s doubtful it will ever happen.

Frank H. Baumgardner, III

Santa Rosa

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DO YOU REMEMBER all the wonderful Independent Newspaper carriers?... I was a trusty Paperboy for the IJ newspaper in 1963, my route was in beautiful Corte Madera where rain or shine I delivered the newspapers on my trusty Sting-Ray bike, also sometimes on my Skateboard...Riding up and down the long steep Hills, throwing papers, sometimes into the night...

Paperboy's and Papergirl's occupies a prominent place in the popular memory of most everyone... This is because it has long been the first paying job available to young Boy's and Girl's everywhere... Newspaper lore suggests that the very first paperboy was hired in 1833, he was 10-year-old Barney Flaherty who was hired after seeing an advertisement in the Sun News and signed up for the job...

The duties of a Paperboy and Papergirl usually included counting and separating sections of papers, rolling-up papers and inserting them in plastic newspaper bags even during inclement nasty weather, also collecting payments from our many customers. Paper carriers were just like dairy farmers, there was no escaping the daily duties of the job... Sometimes Sports and other after school activities were for other kids... We young carriers also learned to handle the responsibility of peddling a dry paper to every customer everyday, even in very cold rainy weather...

The job also helped us in learning just how to handle money, also about learning all sides of human nature, from demanding customers and those who also ducked you when it came time to pay the monthly bill! I still remember it was kind of scary at first, learning which houses to deliver too and just where to put the news papers, every customer had a very special place. Also sometimes having to approach yards with big nasty dogs with very sharp teeth, barking loud at you!...Then there was the knocking on doors to collect money once a month, believe me sometimes it was just like pulling teeth!...

But after a few months on the job at 12 years old, it was the first time I really felt proficient and proud at doing something right... I also couldn't wait till the end of the month, so I could get paid and buy lot's of goodies...

We're You a Paperboy or Papergirl and just where was Your paper route? Please share your interesting story's and photos about delivering Newspapers...

Stephen J Friend 

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Only 18% of voters approve of Congress, but members of Congress seeking reelection have a 95% success rate. It takes real stupidity to blame anyone other than ourselves.

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Russian missiles struck the busy city center of the east Ukrainian city of Kramatorsk and a nearby village on Tuesday, killing at least four people and injuring dozens, according to Ukrainian officials.

Wagner boss Yevgeny Prigozhin has arrived in Belarus, according to Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko. Two planes linked to him landed at an airbase near Minsk Tuesday morning, according to satellite images.

President Vladimir Putin on Tuesday addressed Russian forces who faced Wagner's weekend rebellion, telling them, "You virtually stopped a civil war."

Russia's Federal Security Service said it will drop charges against the paramilitary group, and Wagner will also hand over heavy military equipment to active units of the Russian military, according to the Russian Defense Ministry.

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THE IDIOT SPAWN OF KARL ROVE raises a question for us all: What do you do with political leadership that is more afraid of the solution than of the problem about to kill its constituency? 

Wind and Solar are Saving Texas from Brownouts during deadly Heat Dome, but Republicans want to Abolish Them

by Juan Cole

Ann Arbor (Informed Comment) – Kristoffer Tigue at Inside Climate News reports that climate change made the brutal heat wave assaulting Texas worse, but that the state’s renewable power sources have helped keep the air conditioners running. Temperatures are predicted to stay over 100°F this week, with a slight break owing to a thunderstorm system. The heat wave is also affecting Mexico.

The heat index numbers, which combine the temperature with the humidity reading, are truly horrific, with some towns along the Gulf of Mexico seeing a heat index of 125 F. Scientists have discovered that a temperature of 122°F along with 80% humidity, i.e. a heat index of 160 F is fatal to human beings. A heat index of 125 F. is only very, very dangerous and militates against doing much work outside. Humans cool down by sweating, but that doesn’t work in high heat and humidity, so they can’t get cool and get heat stroke.

A study by Climate Central found that climate change increased the likelihood of the Texas heat wave by a factor of five.

J. David Goodman at the New York Times points out that solar power installations have doubled in Texas since the beginning of the year, and are set to double again by the end of 2023.

(Juan says that this development comes in part from the incentives in Biden’s Inflation Reduction Act for renewables and in part from Biden’s decision to lift the bar on importing panels from places like Vietnam that had been put in place under Trump.)

At the moment, solar is generating 15% of the electricity used by Texans. For the year, that percentage is 7% so far, with 31% from wind. Given the heat dome, they are running their air conditioners heavily. But the legacy power plants have sometimes gone off line. A nuclear plant was inoperable for a few days, and then a coal plant went out.

Solar power wanes, of course, in the evening. But luckily, by around 9 pm the wind typically picks up, so wind turbines provide power at night. Even Texas’ energy company, ERCOT admits that battery power is among the means they have to keep the grid stable during this transition.

Tigue also pointed out that much of the slack was immediately made up with battery storage. And what filled up the batteries? Texas’s renewables. Wind/ Water/ Solar/ Battery can provide 100% of our electricity needs now. The problem is that most states haven’t installed enough battery back-up. The Republican refrain that renewables are unreliable is a typical Big Lie. With batteries, they can be quite reliable.

Gov. Greg Abbot, an inveterate liar in the back pocket of Big Carbon, blamed the 2021 energy outages during a cold spell on wind turbines freezing up. Investigations showed that the wind turbines did fine. It was the fossil gas plants that froze up.

Luke Metzger at Environment Texas explains that Republicans in the Texas legislature introduced a raft of bills this spring aiming to slap high extra fees and disincentives on wind and solar energy in the state. Luckily, he says, the worst measures did not get enough votes to pass. This time. One bill centered on building $10 billion worth of new fossil gas plants, which would be much more expensive than solar/ wind/ battery and would also contribute to the global heating that caused the heat dome in the first place.

Burning fossil gas puts carbon dioxide, a heat-trapping gas, into the atmosphere. It prevents the heat of sun rays that strike the earth from easily radiating back out into space at the rate they did before the Industrial Revolution. Unless humanity stops producing CO2 by 2050, there is a danger we will make our climate chaotic and present people in places like Texas with severe challenges.

So the Texas Republicans now want to kill off the only thing that is helping Texans survive this heat dome– renewable energy and battery storage. One question, though, is whether the federal subsidies and the constant fall in price per kilowatt hour of wind and solar will outweigh any advantages the corrupt GOP tries to give fossil gas. Another question is how long Texans will go on putting these clowns into the state legislature, who want to kill us all with their CO2?

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Scientists knew the planet’s centerline could move. But it took a sharp turn sometime around the start of the 2000s.

by Raymond Zhong

Around the turn of the millennium, Earth’s spin started going off-kilter, and nobody could quite say why.

For decades, scientists had been watching the average position of our planet’s rotational axis, the imaginary rod around which it turns, gently wander south, away from the geographic North Pole and toward Canada. Suddenly, though, it made a sharp turn and started heading east.

In time, researchers came to a startling realization about what had happened. Accelerated melting of the polar ice sheets and mountain glaciers had changed the way mass was distributed around the planet enough to influence its spin.

Now, some of the same scientists have identified another factor that’s had the same kind of effect: colossal quantities of water pumped out of the ground for crops and households.

“Wow,” Ki-Weon Seo, who led the research behind the latest discovery, recalled thinking when his calculations showed a strong link between groundwater extraction and the drifting of Earth’s axis. It was a “big surprise,” said Dr. Seo, a geophysicist at Seoul National University.

Water experts have long warned of the consequences of groundwater overuse, particularly as water from underground aquifers becomes an increasingly vital resource in drought-stressed areas like the American West. When water is pumped out of the ground but not replenished, the land can sink, damaging homes and infrastructure and also shrinking the amount of underground space that can hold water thereafter.

Between 1960 and 2000, worldwide groundwater depletion more than doubled, to about 75 trillion gallons a year, scientists estimate. Since then, satellites that measure variations in Earth’s gravity have revealed the staggering extent to which groundwater supplies have declined in particular regions, including India and the Central Valley of California.

“I’m not surprised that it would have an effect” on Earth’s spin, said Matthew Rodell, an earth scientist at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center. But “it’s impressive they were able to tease that out of the data,” Dr. Rodell said, referring to the authors of the new research, which was published this month in the journal Geophysical Research Letters. “And that the observations they have of the polar motion are precise enough to see that effect.”

Earth’s axis hasn’t been wandering enough to affect the seasons, which are determined by the planet’s tilt. But fine patterns and variations in the planet’s spin matter hugely to the satellite-based navigation systems that guide planes, missiles and map apps. This has helped motivate researchers to try to understand why the axis moves and where it might be headed next.

You can’t feel it, but our planet’s rotation is nowhere near as smooth as that of the globe on your desk.

As it moves through space, Earth wobbles like a poorly-thrown Frisbee. This is partly because it bulges at the Equator and partly because air masses are constantly whirling through the atmosphere and water is sloshing around in the oceans, pulling the planet ever-so-slightly this way and that.

And then, there’s that wandering axis.

One main cause is that Earth’s crust and mantle are springing back after being covered for millenniums by gigantic ice sheets, rebounding like a mattress unburdened of a sleeper. This has been steadily changing the balance of mass around the planet.

More recently, the balance has also been altered by factors more closely linked to human activity and the global climate. These include the melting of mountain glaciers and the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets, changes in soil moisture, and our impounding of water behind dams.

Another big factor, according to the study by Dr. Seo and his colleagues, is groundwater depletion. In terms of the effect on Earth’s axis, pumping up water from underground was second in magnitude, between 1993 and 2010, only to the post-glacier adjustment of the planet’s crust, the study found.

Other forces might also be pulling Earth’s axis in its new direction but aren’t yet fully understood, said Clark R. Wilson, a geophysicist at the University of Texas at Austin and another author of the study. “It’s possible, for example, there’s something in Earth’s fluid core that’s going on, that’s contributing as well,” he said.

Even so, the latest discovery points to new possibilities for using information about Earth’s spin to study the climate, Dr. Wilson said.

Because scientists have collected highly precise data on the position of Earth’s axis during much of the 20th century, they might be able to use it to understand shifts in groundwater use that took place before the most modern and reliable data became available.

It is a possibility Dr. Seo says he has already begun to explore.


  1. Chuck Dunbar June 28, 2023


    “No swearing, Craig.Last warning.”

    From yesterday’s comments, as I glance backwards, a warning by the Editor that should strike fear into us all. I use the occasional nasty word or phrase here —sometimes the right one fits so nicely. It’s hard to resist. And other commenters do the same, beyond our friend Craig. May we all unite in defense of such just usage. Word tyranny cannot prevail. (See, for example, Al Swearengen, in “Deadwood.”)

    • Marshall Newman June 28, 2023

      No unity on this one, at least not from me. Those inclined to swear in print should find another way to make their point. They also should know that the publisher makes the final decision as to what gets published and what does not. There is a related truism in public relations, “Never piss off the reporter – he/she always has the last word.”

    • Bruce Anderson June 28, 2023

      I want to keep the discussion on a reasonably civil level, recognizing that the occasional profanity is, as the Appropriate Police say, appropriate. I’m the appropriate cop on this beat.

      PS. Thank all of you for your book recommendation. I’ll get started as soon as I’ve finished my Gellhorn jag.

      • Chuck Dunbar June 28, 2023

        Understood, of course, Bruce. My post was at least 50% tongue in cheek, as the reference to Al S. of “Deadwood” probably gave away. It did surprise me that Craig was the one who got the warning.

    • Craig Stehr June 28, 2023

      It’s okay. Bruce Anderson has my permission to make any editorial changes deemed necessary for satisfactory publication. ;-))

  2. Marmon June 28, 2023

    RE: UNDERPERFORMING, UNDERSTAFFED, AND UNDERPAID: Grand Jury’s Findings on Mendocino County’s Family and Children’s Services

    This year’s report notes that there are no state waivers available to ease the educational requirements for staff.

    Apparently the County’s “Grow your own social workers” plan didn’t work out. They need to go back to Merit System Services (MSS) for their recruitment, selection and classification services.

    “Pursuant to California Government Code Section 19800 – 19810, the California Department of Human Resources (CalHR) is charged with the responsibility of ensuring that counties that receive federal funds for programs within their Social Services and Child Support Services departments adhere to the federal merit principles. Merit System Services (MSS) provides Recruitment and Selection, and Classification services that meet the federal mandates by following the Local Agency Personnel Standards (LAPS).”

    I wonder if now that the County can’t get another waiver if the State are going to pull back money from those unfilled budgeted positions at Family and Children’s Services. The County’s five year waiver they were given in 2017 didn’t work out, now they will need to make some big changes at that department, or else.


    • peter boudoures June 28, 2023

      Third world county

    • Marmon June 28, 2023


      The County believed they could replace “education requirements” with “years of service”, that’s why they left MSS. They hired people from off the street and worked them out of class. The five year (waiver) plan did not work out as planned. Working conditions, wages, and bad management proved to be the cause their home grown social workers leaving. Now the County almost certainly will have to go back to MSS or face some troublesome consequences beyond a negative Grand Jury report.

      Family and Children’s Services really didn’t care for “Store Bought” social workers in the first place, because the educated asked too many questions.


    • Rye N Flint June 28, 2023

      Finally, there is some public notice about this huge issue in our county! Has anyone seen the giant SEIU 1021 billboard about the “Understaffing” as you drive into Willits from the south exit? Pat Hickey and the union are doing a good job at bringing transparency to the problems too. Keep it up! The BOS doesn’t have Carmel to hide behind anymore. This is their opportunity to step up and do their jobs that we the people have been asking them to do for over 5 years now.

  3. Jim Armstrong June 28, 2023

    I am pretty sure that even if I didn’t live in Potter Valley, the announcements of the Friends of the Eel River would make me gag.

    And about the BBQ: How do they always know they caught the biggest one?

  4. John Sakowicz June 28, 2023


    Paul Dolan has died. He was a leader in biodynamic farming and regenerative organic – truly regenerative – farming. He was a revolutionary.

    He put forth the simple but powerful management principles that enabled Fetzer Vineyards under Paul Dolan to become one of America’s biggest and best-known wineries even as it was turning into a model for sustainable businesses everywhere.

    After he left Fetzer, Paul continued to lead the California wine industry at Bonterra, then Paul Dolan Wine.

    Paul’s own biodynamic vineyard and farming company, Dark Horse, continued to lead the way toward profound change in how wineries and grape growers preserve their environment, strengthen their communities, and enrich the lives of their employees, without sacrificing the bottom line. This was truly a management revolution in one of the most globalized, competitive industries on Earth.

    And his wine? As a matter of record, Paul Dolan Wine produces the best organic pinot noir, hands down.

    Paul was my friend. He was a guest of my show in my early years in public radio.
    And for many difficult years, Paul was a loving and supportive father to an adult son who died of cystic fibrosis. Paul taught me many things about fatherhood.

    Paul gave time and money to many local charities here in Mendocino County. He was a citizen of the world who knew that all politics, and all business, and all charity, start at home.

  5. Marco McClean June 28, 2023

    Since the local salmon industry crashed years ago when the salmon left I’ve wanted to know: how much salmon is served at the big salmon barbecues they still put on in Fort Bragg, and where do they get it all from? What part of the world?

    • Jim Armstrong June 28, 2023

      The ad says there is just one.

      • Marco McClean June 28, 2023

        One salmon? or one barbecue. And if it’s one giant barbecue, how much salmon and where do they get it from?

        • Jim Armstrong June 29, 2023

          One salmon. It says they BBQ the worlds (sic) largest salmon.
          And that’s all I have to say about that.

  6. Marmon June 28, 2023


    Candidate Carrie Shattuck Promises to Eliminate Wasteful Spending as Mendocino County’s 1st District Supervisor

    “I am a lifelong resident of Mendocino County. I have been the owner of a trucking company, school business manager and caregiver, to name a few. I have attended each of the Board of Supervisor meetings for over a year and believe our county needs strong business leadership and direction, which I am capable, eager, and willing to give.

    There needs to be a standard of accountability and follow-through on many current issues. My priority would be to scrutinize each line of the county budget to eliminate wasteful spending. Those dollars could be refocused into our neglected roads placing focus on the maintenance of our thoroughfares…”

    Anyone concerned about the condition of Mendo roads should elect Ms. Shattuck.


  7. Rye N Flint June 28, 2023

    RE: Save The Name Of Our Town – Fort Bragg, California!!

    GROSS!!! Why are we continuing to remember a confederate General that never even lived there as the Name? For convenience of business or… to avoid the uncomfortable conversation about stolen Native Land?

    Just give them their land back already. They obviously took better care of it then the European invasive species that have trashed it over the last 200 years. How you like your Salmon population now? #landback <– Maybe you are into Elon Twit’s company

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