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Valley People (August 2, 2023)

DAVID BEGLINGER, who previously lived in Anderson Valley, was honored at a memorial luncheon at the Beach Chalet on the Great Highway in San Francisco last week. His brother Jim Beglinger, an architect, organized the event for those who knew and appreciated David. A graduate of the Art Institute in San Francisco, David was a creative person known for his dry wit. He was caretaker at the Toll House on Highway 253 for a time and also lived for a while at Rod and Judy Bayshore’s. David was am Army veteran. He died at the VA hospital at Land’s End in San Francisco. (Terry Sites)

FROM THE MINUTES of the Anderson Valley Community Services District Board meeting last week:

FIRE CHIEF’S REPORT: After two months of being out of service, Rescue 7431 is back in service at Boonville Station. This is the only apparatus that can carry all the technical rescue inventory for the district. Some of the rescue equipment was put into our utility pickup 7441 so that it would be taken to scene automatically. The rest of the rescue cache was stored in Philo and would have required a special trip to pick up the equipment if an incident had occurred and the need identified. This would result in significant time delays for operations. Rescue’s incidents are “High Risk, Low Frequency” emergencies which we were luckily able to be avoided this time. Nonetheless, this experience demonstrated our response vulnerability due to having only one apparatus designed to carry rescue equipment. To fix this issue, I have found a way to move forward with acquiring a redundant rescue apparatus while maintaining our current apparatus replacement and response plan. I had intended to bring a rescue unit proposal to the Board in July but I need more time to ensure the district financials can adequately cover the cost. Cora [District Manager Cora Richard] and I need to rerun the financials before bringing the proposal to all applicable AVCSD committees during August.

STRIKE TEAM ASSIGNMENTS: AV Fire Department is not anticipating a large amount of strike team assignments this year. This is primarily due to the number of volunteers not available to commit to these assignments. We only have a handful of personnel who qualify as Engine Boss, Engineer and firefighter who also have the availability to deploy for multiple weeks at a time. It would be most likely to send an engine out on a CalFire station coverage instead since the crew rotation is easier when they are local. 

CLEAN WATER: Dave [consulting engineer David Coleman] reported that there were preliminary positive results about the level of the ground water. As ground water flows into the valley floor for quite some time after rains, late May/early June were the dates to get the highest readings of “seasonal high ground water.” The site data showed ground water levels ranged from 11-19’ which indicated there was sufficient room for our leach areas. Dave was still waiting on the permeability results but felt that the site would be acceptable. The finalized results (Ground water and permeability) should be available in a couple of weeks. The State will accept the technical results from the hydrologist, Steve Klick. We already had two Notice of Preparation meetings for Wastewater (Oct 12, 2017 and Nov 1, 2018) for the CEQA process; there are no more public meetings needed for this. Dave will also add Mendocino Building and Planning department as a “Responsible Agency” on the CEQA documents in case they need to issue a permit. Julia Krog (head of Planning and Building) was not sure they would be involved as it is a State project, but she recommended being on the CEQA document just in case so there are no delays. Dave says he will be able to do the Rate Study for Wastewater by the end of August which is the date that we have on our agreement for planning grant funding. Once we have the Rate Study we can start going through the LAFCo process as well.

DRINKING WATER: Brent [Williams, the District’s attorney] reported that the negotiations with the Museum and the Health Clinic were being finalized and accepted. Meadow Estates is still waiting on the attorney. 

VETERANS’ BUILDING OWNERSHIP TRANSFER: Hanelt [Board Chair Valerie Hanelt] shared an update from Kirk Wilder: “American Legion Post 385 is currently negotiating with the County of Mendocino concerning the transfer of a currently county owned parcel containing the Boonville Veterans Building from county ownership to Post 385 ownership. The County has stated Post 385 qualifies for this transfer at little or no cost. The concern the Post has is if the Post will qualify for property tax exemption. It appears that the Post will be granted exemption, however it is an involved process to obtain a definitive answer. The Post is in the process of filing a claim for an organizational clearance certificate-veterans’ organization exemption. In order to file this, claim the Post must provide formative documents showing the Post is a non-profit and tax-exempt organization. These documents have been requested from the CA Sec of State’s office and have yet been delivered. Once received, the Post will then file the claim for an organizational clearance certificate with the CA Board of Equalization. If the Certificate is granted then the Post must file an application with the Mendocino County Assessor’s office. They are the entity who will make the final determination regarding the property tax exemption requested by the Post. If granted, the Post has every intention of continuing negotiations with the County to obtain the said property. If not granted, the Post will decline to proceed and request the County initiate negotiations with the AVCSD. That is where we are at this moment. I am hopeful the Post will hear something soon from the Sec. of State. However, I am departing Monday morning on a three-week vacation, so I do not expect anything to happen until I return. I have informed the County of my vacation plans and the above outline process I have initiated, and they understand.”

IDEA for Funding Maintenance for Future Public Improvements in Anderson Valley: (CSD Board Chair Valerie) Haneltshared that she had met with Patrick Miller (of the AV Land Trust) and that they discussed a foundation to support Anderson Valley projects. Miller will come in August to further discuss the One Percent Program. There was talk about a 501c3. (Board member Francois) Christen suggested reaching out to Megan Allende from The Community Foundation. This is preliminary and may not even happen for three or four years down the road.

A CALLER ASKED, “What’s that black flag underneath the American flag at the Boonville Post Office?” Remember Frank Riggs? Of course you don't. Nothing memorable about our one-term congressman, but while he was briefly in office some years ago, he teamed up with his fellow Republicans to pass a law that post offices throughout the country would fly a flag representing men and women missing in action, despite Laos, Vietnam and Cambodia having been thoroughly searched for people still being held. But remains of missing soldiers were turned up and identified so the effort was worth doing. Today? As an issue, missing combat people seems to have gone away, but the black flag flies, “POW/MIA You are not forgotten” against a silhouetted figure of a dejected prisoner beneath a guard tower.

CHERISSA JOHNSON: Just wanted to give a review on Offspring Wood Fire Pizza in Boonville (Offspring at the Farrer Building). If you haven’t given them a try, I highly recommend them. My favorite is the Carbonara (I get mine without the egg yolk), the Smoky Tomato Frior di Latte Mozzarella adding chorizo. The ingredients are always super fresh, everyone is so nice and welcoming. They even remember our order when my husband comes in. Also, if you haven’t tried Lauren’s at the Buckhorns truffle fries, go check them out as well. On Tuesday they also have Taco Tuesday with a 3 Taco special and beer for $10.00. It was really good, everyone was very nice!


Proceeds from the dinners will be donated to the scholarship fund at Boont Tribe Community School.

This summer Boont Tribe Community School will be hosting a monthly farm-to-table charity dinner series. Proceeds from the dinners will be donated to the scholarship fund at Boont Tribe Community School. Our school has complete curricular freedom, designing lessons that meet each child’s needs. Our classrooms offer caring individual attention to each of our students, but our tuition-funded school can be a financial burden to some of our beloved families.

The meals will be prepared by Chef Scott Baird, with donated local bounty from the coast to the shallowest end of the valley. Dinner will be served at twilight at a long family style table. The four-course feasts will be at either the Win Win Ranch in Philo or Stoney Bottom in Boonville.

Dates: June 10th, July 15th, August 19th, September 16th & October 21st

Seating will be limited to 20 very lucky guests.

Local wines will be served throughout the dinner.

$80 per person

Contact Seasha for tickets: 707-533-5094

KIRK VODOPALS: What’s up with pg&e shutting off power a coupla times per week each morning? It’s getting pretty annoying


I asked a PG&E crew chief about that the other day. He said during fire season they now have their lines tuned to shut off if something, like a branch, hits a line. Then they have to find whatever it was before they’ll turn the power back on.

I’d guess we’ve had three such shutoffs over the past month. In our case they often report 734 customers are without power, and these outages tend to last a few hours up to a half day.

Last week a sub-subcontractor tree outfit was in our neighborhood trimming branches and trees to clear power lines. They were kind of wild and, in fact, dropped a tree on a neighbor’s service line. The PG&E crew that came out to fix the damaged transformer are the guys I talked to. I came away with the impression that some of our recent outages could be due to these arboreal cowboys dropping limbs and trees on the lines.

WATER COLOR PAINTING by Marian R. Scherf of a water tower in Boonville.

ED NOTE: Dear Ms. Scherf (93 of Willits): Thank you very much for sending his lovely painting of an old water tower up on what was once the Rickard Ranch east of Boonville, later the Moonie Ranch and nowadays “Sheep Dung Estates.” Very nice watercolor work. 

ANNE BENNETT of Sheep Dung Estate in Boonville writes: Thank you for referring Willits watercolorist Marian Scherf to me. What a pleasure! I found what appears to be the same water tower behind the Live Oak Building and sent her fotos. From underneath it looks like it was once white. Her painting is lovely!


Looking for something else on the internet, I stumbled into a travelogue of sorts of Jack London and his wife Charmian - written by the latter — around the time of the 1906 San Francisco Earthquake and Fire. 

In addition to visiting the San Francisco ruins, Jack and Charmian spent a two-week holiday in Napa, Sonoma, Lake and Mendocino Counties that included overnight stops in Ukiah, Willits, Fort Bragg, Navarro, Albion, Greenwood, Boonville and a lunch stop in Philo, before finishing off the trip with stays in Cloverdale, and Santa Rosa before arriving home in Glen Ellen.

The work is titled ‘The Book of Jack London: [Charmian London's Account of the Great Earthquake]’ and is housed in the Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley.

I ASKED my granddaughter how her championship softball game went. “We got mercy-ed,” she said. Mercy-ed? She clarified. “They scored ten runs in the fourth inning, and they were already ahead by ten so the umpire mercy-ed us. That was the end of the game.”


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