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Mendocino County Today: Friday, June 1, 2018

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by Malcolm Macdonald

Mendocino Coast District Hospital (MCDH) held a Board of Directors meeting on the last day of May. The agenda contained some of the usual, such as a closed session item about the federal lawsuit Hardin v. Mendocino Coast District Hospital. The defendants also include the hospital's Chief Executive Officer (CEO), former Chief Financial Officer (CFO), and Board President Steve Lund.

Further down in the agenda one can find the usual lists of appointments to medical staff (full time, provisional, and temporary). The “Consent Calendar” contains the usual minutes of the most recent board meeting as well as adjustments to the Board of Directors' Policies and Procedures. Ah, but there's the rub. The policies being added or adjusted include bereavement leave, a public records request form, time cards for non-bargaining unit employees, and a money purchase pension plan. The list does not include two other policies that CEO Bob Edwards sent out to board members for their perusal a couple weeks back.

Those two additional policies were titled “Video Policy” and “Media Relations Policy.” The Video Policy contains the following wording: 

The public is allowed to use audio or video tape recorders or still or motion picture cameras at an open meeting, absent a reasonable finding by the Mendocino Coast Healthcare District Board of Directors that such recording, if continued, would persistently disrupt the proceedings due to noise, illumination, or obstruction of view. 

Only open and public meetings with a quorum will be recorded or filmed.

Anyone interested in taking video of facilities, staff, contractors, patients, or patients’ families must request and receive permission from a representative of the MCDH Public Relations and Marketing Department, and must follow our Media Relations policy.  

Those three short bullet point paragraphs might seem innocuous to some readers, but it's the second, shortest of the statements that's intended as payback. The payback from CEO Edwards is directed at Mendocino TV for possessing the temerity to record, for the public to see and hear, interim CFO John Parigi at his last public appearance at MCDH in late March. The occasion was a Finance Committee meeting that did not possess enough committee members to constitute a quorum. There has been speculation that Edwards discouraged some members from attending, believing that without a quorum Parigi would not be able to speak, but who knows, could be the case, could be simple coincidence.

Board member and then acting finance committee chair, Dr. Peter Glusker, allowed Mr. Parigi to give his CFO report. Further, Glusker invited any members of the public already present to stay and listen to Parigi's comments. At this point Edwards excused himself. With Mendocino TV recording, Parigi verbally listed the greatest needs for MCDH: Putting in place a coordinated EHR (electronic health records) system. That and at least five more staffers in the business office would help stop coding and billing errors. Parigi estimated that implementing a new EHR system would pay for itself within a year, simply by tracking down the money MCDH is currently missing/losing from its own legitimate bills.

Mr. Parigi's most damning comment came at a different point in his presentation. “The hospital is lacking intellectual capital at its highest level.” As this writer stated in a March 31st piece for the AVA, “A more direct hit on Edwards couldn't have been delivered by a body slam on the fifty yard line.”

So CEO Edwards included that little nugget in the midst of his proposed “Video Policy” that there will be no more videotaping of meetings lacking a quorum.

Edwards' language in his proposed “Media Relations Policy”: 

Members of the media interested in conducting interviews, taking video or taking photographs of facilities, staff, contractors, patients, or patients’ families must request and receive permission from a representative of the MCDH Public Relations and Marketing Department.

Employees are not permitted to serve as spokespersons for the organization or to solicit media coverage without the approval of the Public Relations and Marketing Department.

All media representatives must sign a Confidentiality Agreement, regarding appropriate and agreed upon use of photos and video.

All patients must sign a consent form before the media will be allowed to interview, photograph, or videotape. Patients are not permitted to invite media representatives to their rooms for interviews or photos without consent from the Public Relations and Marketing Department.

Media representatives must remain outside of the main entrance until a member of the MCDH Public Relations and Marketing Department or Security Team can escort them into the facility. A member of the Public Relations and Marketing Department and/or Security Team will accompany members of the media at all times while they are on MCDH property.

The Public Relations and Marketing Department will participate in all interviews arranged via telephone, video or conference call.

A Public Records Request Form must be submitted for all information requests.       

Reading the last line shows the connection to the piece of the puzzle that remains in the May Board of Directors agenda, the seemingly basic public records request form (though the hospital's own legal counsel has stated that public records requests must be complied with regardless of any form). Originally all three policies regarding videoing, media relations and the public records request form came out of Edwards' office together.

Regular readers may recall the May 16th AVA article about Edwards and Board President Lund's “strategic initiatives” for the hospital. As it turned out those so-called initiatives were far less about public input and much more about Edwards having paperwork to show to bureaucratic auditors, inspectors, and regulatory review teams. Assuredly these Video, Media Relations, and Public Records Request Form policies started out as something to display to the Joint Commission (the entity that accredits over 21,000 health care organizations) and other regulatory folk.

Reading the restrictive language in the Media Relations Policy makes me wonder whether Edwards is aware that he is an administrator at a publicly owned hospital. Anyone reading this policy proposal should wonder if Edwards is aware of the U.S. Constitution's First Amendment guarantee regarding freedom of speech and freedom of the press. Edwards would like to impose something akin to a non-disclosure agreement (NDA) on all patients, patient's families, and hospital employees.

I could go on listing the extreme restrictions inherent in Edwards' concept of a Media Relations Policy, but readers undoubtedly can think for themselves and already get the point. 

At the MCDH Finance Committee meeting of May 29th, Edwards confirmed that the Video and Media Relations policies did emanate from his office. As of this writing, apparently enough wiser minds on the MCDH Board have squelched the Video and Media Relations policies from reaching the board's public agenda.

At the May 31st meeting the Board of Directors accepted the resignation of Dr. Lucas Campos. Those interested in filling his seat until the November election can send a letter of interest and a resume to MCDH, 700 River St. Fort Bragg, CA 95437. Interviews of those applying will be conducted July 16th. The public may attend the interview session, but only board members will be asking questions. Two members of the public will be enlisted to help count the ballots cast by the board members near the conclusion of the process.

Potential candidates and readers alike will want to note that three employees have recently been added to assist new CFO Mike Ellis, a fourth position may well be filled in the near future. Also of note, MCDH ended April, 2018 with a net deficit for the fiscal year (to date) of 3.3 million dollars.

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To the Community:

I recently had a very bad experience at the emergency room of the hospital in Willits and would like to warn others of a few things of which to be aware.

When you are admitted to the emergency room you are required to sign a form authorizing medical care and advising you of your rights and of your non-rights. I signed, of course, but did not read anything as I was in distress and was in no shape to drive on to another hospital. I made the mistake of believing I would receive proper care at Frank Howard, Jr. Memorial Hospital — OR, if they felt they could not provide me proper care, they would arrange a transfer to another facility that could provide me with the care I required.

Howard Memorial (also known as Adventist Health Howard Memorial, part of a huge chain now, not just a little country business) informs you in their admissions forms that the doctors and other staff that treat you may not be employees of the hospital. They are independent contractors who are just renting space in the hospital and they (Howard) are not responsible for the quality of care you may receive.

The problem is, who is responsible when something goes wrong, as it did in my case, and what motivation does Howard have to hire good, and dump bad, doctors? On other occasions, I have received very good care at Howard. But on this occasion, I was not so fortunate.

This is not the place to go into details, but the short story is that the physician who treated me in the Howard ER had no idea what to do for my medical circumstances, but proceeded to “treat” me, anyway. She did not stop a procedure when I told her that I was in tremendous pain and that what she was doing was wrong. I have had this procedure before, so I knew what I was talking about. But she would not listen and she would not stop and the eventual result, after it was no longer possible for her to deny she had no idea what she was doing, was a $5,000 ambulance transfer to another hospital in Santa Rosa which had properly trained staff available to deal with my medical needs.

Once there, I required emergency surgery to correct the damage done in the Willits ER and stayed two nights in the hospital until I was strong enough to be discharged. Total billed charges for this “event” are now in the six-figure range, and I continue to have problems and require occasional treatment.

Because of how medical practitioners and providers are protected under California laws, it is very difficult to bring suit unless you are very young and have suffered enormous loss of earning capacity, or are damaged severely enough to have guaranteed major expenses for custodial care and treatment the remainder of your life. It has to be millions of dollars, or no lawyer is going to take the time to represent you.

I cannot sue the hospital even though they made the decision to allow the treating “physician” to practice there because of the contracts I signed upon admission to the ER. The “doctor” who treated me is also not a preferred provider for my insurance — although the hospital is. Our insurance paid her anyway, as if she was “preferred,” and the person I spoke to said this is a common problem in rural hospitals and our insurance will pay the treating physician if the facility is a preferred one, “as a courtesy to their subscribers.” They are under no legal obligation to do this. So, maybe your insurance will pay, or maybe they will not, and it is unlikely that you will be able to figure this out when you arrive at the emergency room. But, even if you do know, what are your choices when you need emergency medical care? One should be able to trust that a hospital makes some effort to have qualified physicians available to treat patients when they present for care, or have alternative plans to make certain their medical needs are met.

It is very unfortunate, but my advice to anyone with the ability to do so is to go to another medical facility for emergency care. Until Howard gets procedures in place which require patients to be transferred when on-site staff is not trained to deal with their medical problems, being treated in their ER may well lead to greater medical problems than brought you into the ER in the first place.

If you absolutely need to go there, try and have someone else with you who can monitor what is being done and help get you to another facility if it becomes obvious that they are not being responsive to your needs and/or are completely ignoring your rights as a patient. When someone is screaming in pain because a procedure is being done incorrectly, the proper medical response is not just to continue what is being done, but use greater physical force.

If your circumstances do make suing Howard Memorial a possibility because of something that was done by someone other than a non-employee contractor, be advised that it will be almost impossible to find out the name of the Agent for Service of Process. You will not find Adventist Health Howard Memorial or anything like that registered with the Secretary of State. I’m sure they have a very good reason for being listed as Willits Hospital Inc. My only recourse at this point is to sue the treating physician, Michella Sheppherd, in Small Claims Court to try and recover my out-of-pocket costs. We are fortunate that our insurance has covered the vast majority of the expenses at both hospitals and for the ambulance transfer. If we did not have insurance, we would be responsible for the entire amount with virtually no legal recourse. Small Claims actions are limited to $10,000, maximum.

Spencer Chase


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Well, this is interesting, the aggressive female Fort Bragg panhandler (read con artist) working the parking lots and streets of Fort Bragg sent MSP a message this morning.

MSP was hit up by the woman last week in the parking lot of Safeway but we were ready for her appeal for a motel room. saying, "And if we don't have money, you want us to go into the ATM and get some right? That's the way your con has been described on social media. It's time to try something else."

A viewer who was also accosted by the woman sent MSP a photo of her as a warning to others. MSP posted it and the post, as of today, had 11,223 views and 104 "shares."

Anyway, this poor, allegedly "impoverished" woman sent MSP a "Demand" message this morning (3:46 am):

In case you haven't heard yet, we are not the North Coast con artists, nor the motel lady, nor any other name that one struggles to come by, but we are the Funny Faced Bandits, Boonie and Claude. That might sound funny, but we are seriously asking you to refrain from allowing anymore slanderous posts or photos because we are contacting an attorney regarding your practice of defamation of character toward us. If you don't want us to proceed, then you must no longer allow this slanderous defamation of character, by removing any and all traces of it, but if we find you to be continuing after 9 a.m. Monday, then we will irrevocably proceed.

Does that sound like someone mentally ill incapable of employment? She even made a fake Facebook page with a photo of the dynamic duo with the logo "Stop Bullying Now." We say, "Stop the aggressive panhandling NOW."

In case they are unaware, Fort Bragg has a panhandling ordinance (…/V…/2067/Panhandling-Information) and this couple's antics are subject to a $100 fine for a first offense, $200 for a second offense within 12 months and third and subsequent offenses $500 and 90 days in County Jail.

Of course, we answered her message:

Panhandling must be lucrative if you can hire a lawyer to try to suppress free speech and try to deny people's First Amendment rights. Good luck with that... How about getting a job instead of begging? That would stop the idle chatter.

We should have noted there is no expectation of privacy while you're harassing people in a public place. And actually, MSP is doing a public service by alerting the general public to these people who are violating the Fort Bragg panhandling ordinance.

In our post many people commented, here are a few of them:

We were approached by the guy in the black trenchcoat on Saturday at Purity. He said they were on the waiting list for a space at Hospitality House, but needed $58 more for a $238 motel room. Really? I've never been able to afford a $238 per night motel room. You could buy a tent and camp out for a couple of weeks for that much money. I saw some out of towners give him money down the street. I'll give folks food clothing and blankets but never money.

Here is the situation. I myself have offered to get her a room for a week I would take her to the motel and pay them myself. I have also made offers to buy meals for people holding up signs that say need food and even offered gas to people that needed gas and in 9 out of 10 cases, they declined the offer stating they just wanted money. So I say NO that is not the deal and I walked away, they got Nothing from me except my contempt for them. If they are truly in need they will accept help and for most, it is easier to con someone out of their money than to earn it…

I'd much prefer to give my money to the musicians playing on the street or the person who's honest, holding up a sign that says,'Looking for Beer Money.' I have some friends that became homeless because of their addiction. It was sad but they would brag about making $200 a day. As long as we enable this kind of behavior by handing over our cash, there will not be a change. My compassion lies more with the person talking to himself on the streets, running in and out of traffic. That is where the real help is needed.

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Needs Assessment Needs Re-assessment: Sheriff, Mental Health Director, And Chair Of Behavorial Health Advisory Committee Discuss Mendo’s Mental Health Needs.

(Transcript of an exchange between Measure B Committee Chair Sheriff Tom Allman, Mendocino County Director of Mental Health Services Dr. Jenine Miller, and Jan McGourty, chair of the County’s Behavioral Health Advisory Committee at their monthly meeting on Wednesday, May 23, 2018.)

Allman: We are not looking for solutions. We are just looking for a needs assessment to assess our needs. So the question would be as Mental Health Director would you [Dr. Jenine Miller, Mental Health Director] have any specific bullet points on what the needs assessment should look at?

Miller: They need to look at the level of cares we have and then whether we as a group offer those cares within our county, or are we paying contracting outside the county if that is still relevant, if that's something we want to include in our services if we are looking at that. Levels of care is everything. So that is my question. What are the services we need for the level of care in our county to make sure we are providing the services that clients need and we are able to step them down appropriately so they don't end up back in custody or re-hospitalized.

Allman: At the state level or the federal mental health level, has any government entity ever put out a basic expectation of services that local government can provide?

Miller: There is a requirement of services you have to provide. A mental health plan. Requirements. You must provide these services. There is a parity act that says regardless of what your insurance is everybody gets the same services. That doesn't really work very well. [Nervous laughter in room.] But we have in the county mental health plan that we have to offer the required level of services, a required number of services based on your mental illness and your level of functioning. We do have to provide specific types of services. But that does not mean that you can't contract outside to provide those services.

Allman: Is there a list of those services?

Miller: Yes sir.

Allman: Do you think there's any way you could have someone email you today a list of services? And here's the reason I say that is because if we don't take care of this today it's gonna be on our agenda for June and it's not gonna be happening until July or August and we are just acting like any other bureaucracy. I'm just hoping that we can get some answers today to make a motion so that we can move forward. So do you think there is any way you can get that emailed?

Miller: I can probably get a contract out.

McGourty: I think that Jenine really laid it out clearly. Maybe the language was a little hard for most people to understand that are not involved in the billing. But one of the problems of the money is that most of it goes out of county for people that need hospital medication. That's where most of the money goes. So if we have nothing here to provide for those people then all the money's gone!

Allman: Right.

McGourty: But my concern, my personal concern, is what she suggested about the lack of parity because there is a huge discrepancy between the services the county provides and everything else because the only system in the county is the county system. That does not apply to anybody with private insurance. It only applies to people with Medicare, Medi-Cal or whatever it is. We don't have psychiatrists here on Medicare, we don't have access to psychiatrists through the county system. We don't have parity which is a huge lack for people who are holding down a good job and maybe carrying their own insurance but they don't have any mental health coverage and services.

Allman: Okay.

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I just got home from another “fire recovery” meeting. After each meeting I find myself in anguish asking, Don’t they know what those words cost? Words like, “Of course you will need to comply with the current building codes.” Don’t they know that the newest codes are full of unexpected and costly requirements?

“It will take two years to replace the contaminated pipes … We cannot guarantee that we will have water to your new house …” Don’t they understand — I mean truly and deeply understand — how devastating those words are to our already over-traumatized neighbors and how much such a delay will cost them?

“We don’t know that yet … We hope to have an answer on that soon … We’re going to being looking into that …” Don’t they know what these words cost? Increased fear and worry. Frustration, desperation and despair.

As I leave each meeting, I hear people around me saying, “I just can’t take this anymore. We’re going to have to sell our lot and move away. We need to rebuild our lives somewhere else.” It makes me so sad. I don’t want them to leave. For how many more meetings must this go on? Don’t they know what these words cost?

Bob Harder


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by Flynn Washburne

Time travel has become a familiar enough subject to us by way of innumerable fictional treatments that we're all pretty conversant with the (contrived) ins and outs of it, the various scientific gymnastics and logical liberties taken to account for the obviously insurmountable paradoxes present in any discussion of temporal elasticity, and so most reasonable people have concluded that it is in fact a permanently fictive proposition. Oh, now again some deep thinker will posit a set of theoretical principles arguing otherwise and revive the discussion, but these generally have value only as thought experiments. In the absence of any other evidence we are sticking to the model governed by the 2nd Law of Thermodynamics in which entropy rules and time's arrow flies strictly in one direction. Right?

Wrong. Sorry to burst your bubble, but time travel is real, achievable, and happening right now.

All you have to do is rob a bank, and you don't even have to go that far. You can do mayhem on somebody (not recommended), or bring a truckload of illegal drugs across the border, or hack into government websites and create havoc in the administration (the morally preferable method). The idea is to piss off the authorities enough so that they sequester you away from society long enough for technology to advance significantly. Hey presto! Time travel.

After seven years, my phone alone was enough to Marty McFly me into a condition of baffled amazement. Televisions are not only smart (-er than me, judging from the complexities of the remotes), but someone has managed to actually improve on reality. Cars are loaded with a bunch of interesting distractions that are mitigated by less interesting driver-assist functions which I suppose cancel each other out and make driving more or less as safe or dangerous as it ever was. Call that one a wash.

The whole experience has been rather shocking and frankly, I resent the whole lot of you for just freely carrying on without me. For now I find myself in the unfamiliar role of slack-jawed yokel craning his neck to gape at all the tall buildings as daily, the technological innovations of the last seven years continue to gobsmack me. This is not a comfortable place to be, for an information junkie. It is important to me not only to know things, but doubly so to get the goods before anyone else so as to appear blasé when some breathless laggard comes at me with what he believes is a piece of blistering scuttlebutt.

"Yawn," I'll say. "Yeah, I sent you an email about it a couple of days ago."

It's as good as bad sex, which, like bad pizza and bad Nic Cage movies, is still pretty good.

So, time travel is a thing, sorta, and I'm here to tell you that it is not worth the trouble. Yes, being able to jump from iPhone3 to X in one fell swoop is thrilling in the extreme. Meeting Siri and Alexa was a singular pleasure and more than anything, emblematic of the future I now occupy. Not having to do the twist while backing out of parking spaces is pretty damned nifty, but on the whole I wish I'd stuck around and experienced progress incrementally, the way God intended. Mucking around in the space-time continuum can only lead to trouble, as generations of sci-fi writers have warned us about.

I also got a few nastier surprises in the form of dead friends. Five total, which averages out to 0.71 dead friends per year, not a terrible average considering the company I keep and their manner of living. Four of them were, if not expected, then at least not entirely shocking. If you lie down with dogs you're going to get fleas, and if your social network is composed of degenerate dope fiends you're liable to be attending a few more memorial services than most people find comfortable.

I have devoted at least two columns over the years to the exploits and adventures of Crystal Knight and mentioned her in several more; her impact on my life, as with everyone else who ever loved, hated, or was violently assaulted by her, was considerable. Had I handicapped the field and assigned odds to the relative likelihood of my various acquaintances succumbing to the perils of the life, Crystal would've been a long shot on the order of a goat jockeyed by a spider monkey vying for the Preakness. Being a genuine force of nature, it's difficult to imagine anything short of a biblical plague or nuclear event taking her out, but in fact it was the entirely pedestrian and ruthlessly indiscriminate scourge of opiates that felled that little giant.

Crystal and I went through the Ford Street program together twice, and together with our staunch ally Beaverhawk left our mark on that place with some truly epic shenanigans. It was there that she met her ex-husband, my friend Conrad Whetstone, a man so mellow he makes Jack Johnson look like Daffy Duck.

Given Crystal's dynamism, volatility, and contempt for weakness, you might expect such a pairing to follow a praying mantis-style relationship model wherein the female bites the head off her mate once the reproductive necessities have been addressed, but they were better suited than anyone imagined and got on quite well when she wasn't trying to murder him. Although circumstances precluded a happily ever after for those two, they did produce Asher, a child of uncommon charm, intelligence, and potential.

Crystal was one of the people I most looked forward to seeing when I got out and it was a real punch in the gut to get the news, but I'll just say I'm richer for having known her. I know she is deeply missed by many and left a substantial hole on the skin of this earth. Rest in peace, little warrior.

Temporal modifications and disappointments notwithstanding, I'm adjusting nicely to the brave year 2018, drinking coconuts and cucumbers and chatting up Google like we were old homies. Prison recedes further daily into the dank recesses of unpleasant memory and it won't be long before it takes on the character of an overlong and tedious movie I vaguely remember seeing.

Mendocino County seems, on the whole, healthier and more prosperous than when I left, although the robust economy doesn't seem to have diminished the number of tweakers infesting the streets or the vagrants plying the tracks. There may even be more of them, leading me to the conclusion that they are either immune to economic variance or simply responding to the upswing with predictable growth patterns, like Apple building a new headquarters. If there is a general distribution of more money throughout the population, it stands to reason there's more spare change to be had and more opportunists out there to get their hands on it.

I am currently parked in the latest incarnation the Ford Street Project, the Ukiah Recovery Center, inoculating myself against the possibility of returning to drugs and prison, an untenable alternative. Onward and upward, I say, in the traditional day-to-day manner; no telling what kind of changes I effected with that time-travel nonsense.

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“MAMMOTH TOMATO VINE near Willits. Jasper Williams Jr. has a tomato vine only 4 months old which is now 8 feet high and still growing. It is the smally cherry viarity.”

Remember Willits: The mammoth potato vine of 1914

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Dear Editor,

This letter of support for Prop 69 reflects my personal support and that of a majority of the Mendocino Transit Authority Board.

Prop 69 will guarantee that SB1 taxes, passed by the legislature last year, will go into special accounts that can only be used for their intended purpose of maintaining and building transportation infrastructure. As stated by the Berkeley Political Review SB1 ensures that gas taxes are distributed fairly to all taxpayers and that the projects they finance directly benefit even low-income drivers through increased road and public transit quality.”

Well over $80 million of state and local SB1 transportation projects in Mendocino County have already been approved and much more will follow in the coming years.

During my 8 years on the Ukiah City Council one of the most often asked questions was “When are you going to fill the pot hole in front of my house?” In the ensuing 20 years the answer has not gotten easier or clearer. Until now.

SB1 is not perfect, but Prop 69 will ensure that all taxes it generates will go towards improving the aging transportation system of roads and public transit in California.

Please join me in voting Yes on Prop 69.


Jim Mastin

Chair, Mendocino Transit Authority

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AFTER MENDOCINOSPORTSPLUS posted some dramatic video of the immediate aftermath of a SMART train accidentally ramming a moving van in Santa Rosa Thursday afternoon, a commenter named Charles Peavey noted: “Everyone complained about SMART trains blowing their horn at crossings so they decided not to allow use of the trains horn at crossings in Santa Rosa. There is a little sign at the crossing warning traffic that the train does not signal. Now we can see how well that works.” The truck was badly damaged, a driver seemed to have been hurt, and the “SMART” train (which MSP said had its view blocked by a side panel on the train) didn’t seem particularly affected.

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To the Editor:

In support of Katrina Bartolomie.

Katrina began her career with the County of Mendocino, Assessor County Clerk Recorder in 2004. Initially, Katrina was hired by the County of Mendocino for a position in the Assessor’s Office.

She is the only candidate who has extensive experience in Elections and in the Clerk Recorder divisions.

As a lifetime resident of Mendocino County, Katrina possesses extensive knowledge regarding local individual communities. Katrina loves the outdoors and is often out enjoying beautiful Mendocino County.

Katrina is experienced and current on election laws that assure the legal processes are adhered. She has extensive knowledge and training in business administration/management, accounting, and preparing and maintaining budgets. Katrina is dedicated to her work and to the public; she works hard every day.

A vote for Katrina is a vote for progress.

Susan & Ralph Maize, Ukiah
Ron & Nancy Parker, Ukiah
Faye Hefte, Ukiah
Dorinda Kay Miller, Ukiah
Cindy L. Franci, Ukiah

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The Boonville Farmers' Market will take place Saturday from 9:30-12:00 in the Boonville Hotel parking lot.

Petit Teton apologizes for not being at market last weekend...the weather was a bit wet and ugly. A few of you found us at the farm though! We will definitely be there this coming weekend with: beef, pork, sausage, bacon, squab, eggs, canned goods array, vegetables (favas, endive, escarole, spring onions, baby artichokes, beet greens, and whatever else pops up), starts (leeks, eggplant, sweet pepper, spicy pepper), and three varieties of popsicles!

The Yorkville Olive Ranch will be at the market on Saturday with our 2016 and 2017 Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Tuscan Field Blend in both the 375 ml and 750 ml bottles. Also the 2017 Meyer Lemon Infused Tuscan Olive Oil will be available but only in the 375 ml bottles. Remember that our Extra Virgin Olive Oil in larger quantities, a gallon or more, is available at the Ranch. You should call 894-0530 to arrange a time. You will need to bring your own container. There are real savings in buying in bulk.

Brock Farmstand Open Daily

Brock Farmstand is open with spring veggies rolling in including: snap peas, greens, summer squash, salad mix, beets, and onions. Open every day from 9 a.m. - 8 p.m.

Free Public Event: Grow your own Food, Now

June 21, 2018

6:30 PM - 8:30 PM

Redwood Coast Senior Center, Fort Bragg

A description of a new and promising way that everybody can grow their own food, increasing yields two to six times, with 66% less water, in much less land than conventional growing requires, all the while building up the fertility of the soil much faster than nature, and dramatically cutting the use of fossil fuels. The Grow Biointensive Method will be described by John Jeavons, Executive Director of Ecology Action. This practical sustainable mini-farming method is in use in 152 different countries around the world, and is practical for use in Mendocino County.

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LITTLE DOG SAYS, “Got an email from my lawyer, Frank Zotter Esq. ‘I will represent you pro bone-o, Little Dog’."

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No mention of the obvious solution to the plague of purple urchins decimating the bull kelp: sea otters (“Revenge on tiny purple sea creatures,” Saturday). Once swarming our coast until trapped in the 1800s, sea otters love purple urchins.

Since they eat 20 percent of their body weight a day, and are the apex predator of urchins, it seems logical to reintroduce the sea otter to our coast. Otters near Monterey have been seen with purple jaws from eating so many urchins.

While laudable, several dozen divers won’t make a dent on the urchin population. The kelp forests below my cabin in Big Sur are robust and healthy. I see anywhere from five to 20 otters on a given day. Why aren’t we talking about the logical solution?

Peter Prunsuke


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Defendant Eugene Allon Lincoln, age 63, of Covelo, was sentenced on Tuesday of this week to 180 days in the county jail as just one of a series of conditions imposed pursuant to a 60-month grant of supervised probation. He was initially sentenced to 36 months in state prison, but that sentence was suspended pending the defendant’s successful completion of probation and compliance with all terms of his probation. If a violation of probation is detected during the next five years and proven in court by a preponderance of the evidence, the suspended prison term will then be imposed.

Defendant Eugene Lincoln was convicted by guilty plea of a felony violation of unlawful cultivation of marijuana resulting in environmental violations of law. One of the three environmental violations admitted was damming a stream and lining it with plastic to unlawfully capture all the stream’s water for distribution to various marijuana gardens at and around where the defendants were living. The defendant was also convicted by guilty plea of being a convicted felon in unlawful possession of ammunition, also a felony. The prosecutor’s request for a restitution order for stream bed and environmental remediation was reserved for a future hearing.

Co-defendant Sonya Lou Lincoln, age 54, of Covelo, sister to co-defendant Eugene, was also sentenced on Tuesday. She stands convicted of a misdemeanor violation of unlawful cultivation of marijuana resulting in environmental violations of law. Having played a lesser role in the larger crime, defendant Sonya Lincoln was placed on 36 months summary probation. A jail sentence of 60 days in the county jail was imposed but suspended to remain suspended unless the defendant violates one or more of the terms of her probation. In addition to the other terms and conditions of probation, the prosecutor’s request for restitution from this defendant for stream bed and environmental remediation was also reserved for a future hearing.

The prosecutor who has been handling this case on behalf of the People of the State of California is District Attorney David Eyster. The investigating law enforcement agencies were the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office and the California Department of Fish and Wildlife.

Mendocino County Superior Court Judge Cindee Mayfield presided over the disposition of this action.

(District Attorney Press Release)

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Senator Mike McGuire’s groundbreaking bill that will create the Great Redwood Trail, which will extend from the San Francisco Bay to the Humboldt Bay, is one step closer to reality after it was approved with a unanimous 36-0 vote in the State Senate last night.

“There is tremendous support for this trail project both in the state Legislature and on the North Coast and we couldn’t be more grateful for the support thus far,” said McGuire, noting the strong bi-partisan vote in the Senate and significant local backing. “However, there is still major work to do and we know that anything that makes a big difference is never easy. We need to resolve the significant financial debt that NCRA has racked up over the years as our first step.”

McGuire is continuing to meet with state government agencies, land owners, trail advocates and transportation officials on a plan to work out the agency’s financial debts and chart a way forward for the popular trail system.

The bill, SB 1029, has become one of the top priorities for environmental organizations around the state, making the Green California “Hot List” of critical bills this year. This list is compiled by leading environmental organization like the League of Conservation Voters, the Sierra Club, Trout Unlimited and dozens more. The California Transportation Commission is also in support of this important bill.

“From the San Francisco Bay, through the incredible beauty of wine country, alongside the glistening banks of the Russian and Eel Rivers, into the stunning old growth Redwood forests, and up to and around panoramic Humboldt Bay – this is truly an incredible piece of earth. SB 1029 sets the stage to turn this 300 mile long-suffering train track into a world renowned trail system that will benefit locals and visitors alike and be a boon to our local economies,” Senator Mike McGuire said.

The Great Redwood Trail will be a significant economic driver for the rural North Coast communities it would wind through. California outdoor recreation is one of the fastest growing sectors of the Golden State’s economy. It generates over $92 billion a year here in California, is responsible for nearly 700,000 jobs with over $30 billion in wages, and brings over $6 billion in tax revenues back to state and local communities. The trail will attract hundreds of thousands of locals and visitors alike to hike this spectacular landscape and inject needed funds into our small, rural economies.

The North Coast Railroad Authority will be dissolved through SB 1029, and the 300-mile-long right-of-way will be segmented roughly at the halfway point. The Northern Segment, from Willits to Arcata, will be transferred to the newly created Great Redwood Trail Agency who will begin railbanking the right-of-way and start the planning for the trail, including a significant community input process. The Southern Segment will be transferred to Sonoma Marin Area Rail Transit who will be responsible for passenger and freight trains, and will build the southern section of the Great Redwood Trail.

Press release from McGuire’s office

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NOT EVERYONE is enthusiastic, a reader comment: "Homeless communities will spring up everywhere along the route to pick off the yuppies one by one. This is just more wasted tax dollars by libs like McGuire. How about a fish hatchery instead? And squawfish eradication and watershed rehab? This is also going to create major conflict with private property owners. Trash will be everywhere along with human waste. Who's going to care for and police this virtual wilderness?"

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Tickets available at the door, $15.

A unique theatrical production staged at the Anderson Valley Solar Grange.

This tale is a bow to the silent film era, and is told without dialogue. Mood and plot are carried by physical gestures coupled to music, with emphasis placed on vaudeville-style comedy. This show was conceived of and written by local resident and director Aaron ‘Cob’ Martin, and scored by Daniel McDonnell. The score will be performed live accompanying each performance. The evening opens with live music and hors d'oeuvres. Next, a viewing of The Silent Musical, followed by more live music and merriment. Libations available at the no-host bar. Ticket sales benefit KZYX.

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CATCH OF THE DAY, May 31, 2018

Amador, Arnold, Bartolo

DAVID AMADOR, Willits. County parole violation.

SHANNON ARNOLD, Fort Bragg. Disorderly conduct-alcohol, probation revocation. (Frequent flyer.)

ROBERTO BARTOLO, Santa Rosa/Ukiah. Failure to appear.

Danforth, James, Olstad

FRED DANFORTH JR., Willits. Felon with firearm, possession of ammo by prohibited person, large capacity magazine.

ROBERT JAMES SR., Ukiah. Disorderly conduct-alcohol, probation revocation.

RICHARD OLSTAD, Fort Bragg. Second degree burglary, controlled substance, evasion, failure to appear.

Ryan, Shineywater, Torango

LORAL RYAN, Albion. Disorderly conduct-alcohol, resisting.

NATHAN SHINEYWATER, Anacortes, Washington/Willits. Resisting.

BENJAMIN TORANGO, Mendocino. Shoplifting with larcenous intent, trespassing/obstructing business, probation revocation.

Washburn, Weinberg, Wilson

RICHARD WASHBURN, Fort Bragg. Domestic abuse.


JAMES WILSON, San Francisco/Ukiah. Pot sales/transportation, suspended license, no license.

* * *


California is a diverse state and it appears patriotism is alive there. At Fresno State’s softball stadium people spontaneously sang the national anthem when it was announced the anthem was not going to be played.

“Tiffany Marquez’s daughter plays softball with girls from both teams, so they were there to support her friends. She said people were confused at first, because it didn’t make sense to not play the anthem — especially since it was Memorial Day weekend.

People booed the announcement and then started singing a cappella. In an instant, the entire crowd was standing to attention and facing the flag. Many took off their hats or put their hands over their hearts.

“It gave me chills!” Marquez said. She grabbed her phone out of her sweatshirt pocket so she could capture the moment. “It was one of the neatest things I’ve ever experienced. I mean, there I was, standing in the middle of a true testament to unity and patriotism,” she said.

Long live California and its diversity! (including its patriotic “illegal” immigrants)

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(Click to enlarge)

* * *


Starting in the 1920s, inventive entrepreneurs started creating attention-grabbing buildings to appeal to passing drivers and while they were initially dismissed as monstrous, their appeal has endured.

* * *


It was not long ago that it seemed as if the companies of Silicon Valley were poised to renew and reshape American capitalism.

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* * *


June 14-15 workshop series - “Jumpstart” your nonprofit’s fundraising through this special presentation.

While you’ve been busy managing programs, balancing the budget, and more, the Community Foundation has been busy planning to help you raise more money. On June 14th and 15th, we’re hosting two free, hands-on workshops in Ukiah and Ft. Bragg on how to create a right-sized development plan, exclusively for our local nonprofits. You’ll learn to create the plan, get the training, and take away templates that have helped others like you raise 30% more. Also, we’ll be sharing about a special, grant-underwritten fundraising program called “Jumpstart,” with everyone that attends - I think you’ll be interested to learn more.  I didn’t see your name on the registration list yet so I thought I’d ask. Will you be able to join us?

If so, you can register here for Ukiah, and here for Ft. Bragg.

Very sincerely,

Holly Madrigal, Program Officer, The Community Foundation of Mendocino County, 204 South Oak Street, Ukiah CA 95482, 707-468-9882 (office) ; 707-468-5529 (fax)

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* * *


What an amazing event. Thank you all for making the first Recreational Purple Urchin Removal Event a success. We had 100 volunteer divers over the two days not including shore support. We collected 2,200 gallons of urchin totaling over 7,000 pounds. That would take a commercial boat 14 days to equal. We also raised $13,600 for the commercial efforts in Sonoma. The next event will be July 21 and 22 at Albion/Schooners landing. I'll post the next event page in a moment and post a link to it on this page.

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Saturday, June 9, 2018 from 10am to 12pm at Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens

This 1-day, 2-hour workshop is a great introduction to gardening for your young ones with a green thumb. Kids will learn about backyard ecosystems and learn to make helpful garden observations. We will work and play while planting, nurturing, and harvesting in the organic demonstration vegetable garden at Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens. Children (ages 8 to 10) of any level of gardening experience are welcome to attend. Class size is limited and for participating children ages 8 to 10. Class cost is $20 for members; $30 for non-members (includes Gardens admission for the day). Payment is due upon sign-up. Please note, all workshop fees are non-refundable unless the workshop has been canceled or rescheduled by the Gardens. Sign your children up by phoning The Garden Store at 707-964-4352 ext. 16 or stop by The Garden Store at Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens.



  1. Sonya Nesch June 1, 2018

    This is the California “basic expectation of services” information that Sheriff Allman was asking for.

    CCR Title 9 State Mandated Mental Health Treatment Services.
    California Code of Regulations (CCR)

    a. Pre-Crisis and Crisis Services
    Immediate response to individuals in Pre-Crisis and Crisis and to members of the individual’s support system, on a 24-hour, 7 day a week basis. These may be provided through mobile services. The focus is to offer ideas and strategies to improve the person’s situation and help access what is needed to avoid crisis. The focus of crisis services is stabilization and crisis resolutions, assessment of precipitating and attending factors, and recommendations for meeting identified needs.
    b. Assessment
    This includes evaluation and assessment of physical and mental health, income support, housing, vocational training and employment, and social support services needs. Evaluation and assessment may be provided through mobile services.
    c. Medication Education and Management
    This includes the need for administration of, and education about, the risks and benefits associated with medication and is to be done prior to administration of medications. Families and caregivers should also be informed about medications.
    d. Case Management
    Clients are assisted in gaining access to needed medical, social, educational, and other services. Can be provided through mobile services.
    e. 24-hour Treatment Services
    Treatment provided in any of the following: Acute Psychiatric Hospital, Acute Psychiatric Unit of a General Hospital, Psychiatric Health Facility, Institute for Mental Disease, Community Treatment Facility, Community Residential Treatment Program — including crisis, transitional and long-term programs.
    f. Rehabilitation and Support Services
    Treatment and rehabilitation services designed to stabilize symptoms, and to develop, improve, and maintain the skills and supports necessary to live in the community. This can include: individual and group counseling, Day Treatment Programs, collateral contacts with friends and family, and peer counseling programs. These services may be provided through mobile services.
    g. Vocational Services
    Services which provide a range of vocational services to assist individuals to prepare for, obtain, and maintain employment.
    h. Residential Services
    Room and Board and 24-hour care and supervision.

    Sonya Nesch

    • james marmon June 1, 2018


      So, outside of Redwood getting to the Emergency Rooms quicker than Ortner, how else has your friend Camille Schraeder made things better for adults suffering with Mental Health issues in the last two and a half years?

      So what do we want to do now, blame Ortner for not taking any clients from Mendocino which has now resulted in longer waits in the Emergency Rooms while RCS staff scramble to try find a psyche hospitals elsewhere?

      We treated Ortner bad, and now we get even less from RQMC, but no one wants to eat crow and admit that they made a mistake.

      Where’s the money Camille?

      James Marmon MSW
      Former Mental Health Spicialist
      Sacramento, Placer, and Lake Counties.

      P.S. faster is not always better.

      • james marmon June 1, 2018

        Schraeder now understands what Ortner was going through, there is no full spectrum infrastructure in Mendocino County to support the Adult Mentally ill population and reduce hospitalizations. In the last two decades the County built up the Children’s System of Care (RCS) and what little we had for adults, Angelo cut them.

    • BB Grace June 1, 2018

      How confused am I Ms. Nesch?

      The Sheriff was asking Jenine Miller, the Health and Human Services Agency (HHSA) Behavioral Health Director of Mendocino County questions concerning the CA State DHCS which offers this form by the title you provided?

      Another link provided for CCR 9 was this

      Both links are for the state, not the county. Your post reminded me that when I was researching, “What the hell is wrong with Mendocino mental health”, I went to the State where I found that the county and state don’t work together.

      Why would the sheriff ask the county for information concerning CA Department of Health Care Services? Why wouldn’t the sheriff ask the state, or is there a CCR for Mendocino and if there is could you provide a link? I haven’t found anything. I appreciate your efforts.

  2. Arthur Juhl June 1, 2018

    Sonya, don’t you think that a satellite program would work in each community? That would certainly be less expensive and you would help more people locally.
    As,a potential Supervisor, I would like to see more money spent here on the coast rather than in Ukiah. We are neglected here on the coast and I will make sure in the future that our needs are met! Arthur E. Juhl candidate for the 5th district Supervisor

  3. Eric Sunswheat June 1, 2018

    Redwood Trail will be great for mental health recovery, with shelters in place every few miles, trail maintenance counselors nearby and via telemedicine. Now with President Trump and his new massive tariff program economic dislocation effort to protect our steel and aluminum industrialists, the tariff money could be distributed, as part of universal basic income $500 monthly vouchers to all US citizens, such as with the Stockton, California experiment now underway in a fracturing disparity employment economy. Do I hear the refrain, America is great, again.

    • Mike Williams June 1, 2018

      The Redwood Trail is an interesting concept, with a couple of hurdles to overcome. The tunnels are problematic, one north of Cloverdale is about a quarter mile long but is heavily damaged by fire a few years ago. The tunnel near Alderpoint is over a mile long and will need to be secured or an alternate trail around it. The slide near Dos Rios is huge and will need much work to route a trail through or around. There are several other tunnels to consider, looks like there will be another “needs assesment” for this to go forward.

  4. Lazarus June 1, 2018


    It is interesting to read this account of an experience at Adventist Health, Willits.
    My experiences have bee quite different. On two occasions I have taken friends in distress to the Emergency Room at Adventist. Both times we were greeted the utmost compassion and professional care.
    It is unfortunate if not distressing to hear this report. I hope the patient, if warranted, gets a just resolution.
    As always,

  5. michael turner June 1, 2018


    I want to call bullshit but let’s assume all this to be true.

    Why does the aggrieved patient assume that his only recourse is try and sue somebody? Why is this his pathway to resolve his dispute? Both the hospital and the state are governed by licensing boards, both of which have online systems for evaluating patient complaints. And the both the hospital and the contracted medical group have mandated Quality Assurance procedures to monitor and review care. A much better way to proceed than writing screeds to the newspaper, if in fact it can be demonstrated that medical error occurred.

  6. Bill Pilgrim June 1, 2018


    Thanks for the MR. NATURAL!
    It put me in mind to look for my pile of ZAP comics.

    Keep on truckin’

  7. Zeke Krahlin June 6, 2018

    Flynn Washburne:

    So glad you are back in the world and not behind bars any more, Mr. Wasburne! And thanks once again, for a crackerjack piece of writing. May there be many more to come, as I am now so addicted I can’t imagine being without my weekly fix. I’d shoot up your stories if I had to.

  8. RH Bond June 8, 2018

    I threw a Flynn Washburne release party in my mind alongside reading this piece. Zeke, I too am hooked.

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