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Cases of COVID19 are on the rise again in Mendocino County. Now the Public Health Office reports a positive case at Raley’s in Ukiah. The announcement Friday that at least one person connected to the supermarket had tested positive. And they’re warning anyone who visited the location at 1315 N. State Street between Friday, July 23 and Sunday, July 25, may have been exposed. The public health office has also reported another death in the county, for a total of 52 who have now passed on due to the pandemic.  As far as the Raley’s case goes, the corporate office says they’re “committed to the health and safety of their customers and team members”. They say when they found out about the case, they took immediate action in alignment with all governing bodies, including the CDC, OSHA, and local health officials. The most recent death, unrelated to the grocery store was a 73-year-old man from Willits.

Those enrolled in Medi-Cal are apparently amongst the lowest rate of vaccinated Californians. A new report shows only 45 percent of Medi-Cal enrollees who can get the vaccine have gotten it, compared to 70 percent of all eligible Californians. There are as many as 14 million residents enrolled in Medi-Cal. The reports says that leaves low income people highly vulnerable to the virus, especially the Delta variant. The state’s Medicaid director says it’s “stark reminder of the inequities within our delivery system.”

The Lake County Grand Jury has a new report out on the homeless in the county. The report says those who are jailed are not accounted for, among other things. The report for the years 2020-21 was released last month. It also showed first responders were also not tracking the homeless in their calls out to emergencies of any sort. Also any criminal acts by homeless people weren’t included or if they had shelter to begin with, so there were associated costs, apparently not accounted for. The report also showed there were not appropriate facilities for them and that they sometimes started fires or blighted communities where they left trash behind.

An emergency desalination system is being installed in Fort Bragg. The Daily Journal reports city leaders are scrambling to get the work done in light of the historic drought. The report says there are water shortages across the state, and in some areas, there’s no water to be had, let alone to water vegetation. That could create a severe fire emergency.  The State Water Resources Control Board in Sacramento is reportedly working on a list of which public water systems have critically low water. It shows 81 water systems serving over 132,000 people in Northern Calif., including Ukiah and Fort Bragg were running low during this hot, dry summer. 

As if the Delta variant of coronavirus wasn’t enough, now we’re getting word that West Nile virus activity found in Lake County. The Lake County Vector Control District says West Nile virus activity is increasing across the state, including in Lake County which is a reminder they say that if you get bit by a mosquito, it’s possible, you can be infected with the virus. There are some things to do to avoid it, dump or drain standing water, use repellants when you’re outside at dusk and dawn on hot days and try to avoid being outdoors those times of day to begin with. 21 California counties have detected WNV this year, mostly in surveillance samples. There were three human cases of West Nile virus illness reported in California residents this year at the end of last month.

In Lake County the cases of COVID-19 continue increasing. The virus is moving at such a swift pace, the county’s reporting their hospital emergency departments are stretched thin. Sutter Lakeside in Lakeport and Adventist Health in Clearlake have been taxed for a week. And the Lake County Health Services Department heard from some that they had mild symptoms but went to an emergency room to be tested. They remind, like in the beginning of the pandemic, that resources are already limited and getting tested or even seeking the vaccination at the hospital could be stretching resources beyond what they’re capable of as the Delta variant spreads fast. They say to visit your doctor or call nursing advice lines, rather than going straight to the emergency room.

A report by the Sheriff’s office about another marijuana eradication effort in Covelo. The Mendocino County Sheriff’s office went out last Thursday to the grow on Biggar Lane after being called by Code Enforcement. The code officers found an illegal grow they say was on several acres. So aerial overflights were done and deputies confirmed over a hundred (100) plastic style hoop houses on properties that had previously been denied growing permits. Several people were detained and interviewed. One main suspect was identified, but not there at the time. Nearly 14,500 plants were found and taken out, along with almost 7,600 pounds of processed bud marijuana, which has been destroyed. After that was found the Round Valley Tribal Police called for help after finding more than 5,500 marijuana plants nearby, which were also destroyed. 

The Governor had a Zoom chat with the President and Vice President. The trio of leaders spoke about Calif. wildfire challenges after the Governor asked for help from the Fed in the form of more firefighters, aerial firefighting equipment, more aggressive wildfire response, and long-term access to satellite technology for early fire detection. There were six other Western state governors on the call, Idaho, Minnesota, Montana, Oregon, Washington and Wyoming. The governor’s office says they’ve already invested $2.2 billion for a wildfire resiliency and advance emergency response team for this year alone, the most ever in Calif. It will pay for more firefighters, equipment and expanded land and forest management efforts.

The Third Street boat ramp is closing in Lakeport due to low water conditions. It’s happening as the city is starting a new parking project. The Fifth Street launch is staying open and will be monitored. Lake Co News reports the city manager saying it’s the first time ever they had to close the Third Street ramp due to low water since it was built back in 1984. There will be temporary lane closures and detours during the parking project which starts today. They’ll be replacing water line, upgrading storm drains, curbs, gutters, sidewalks and the reconstructing and paving the parking lot between Third and Fifth streets.

Since the infection rate in Sonoma County is so high, they’re going backwards, and could reinstate some safety precautions the county had during the lockdown. There are more infections now then they’ve had in months, the most since March and mostly in the unvaccinated. The county also reports their hospital emergency rooms are teeming with COVID-19 patients, so they’re scrambling to find enough staff to work. The Press Democrat reported 10 cheerleaders from Windsor High tested positive last week after an out of town camp. That after 30 inmates at their county jail tested positive and over 110 people at their largest homeless shelter also tested positive and at least one person died.

A man from Willits has been arrested, police say it was for threatening another man with a knife. Deputies responded to reports yesterday of a man with a knife and found the guy hiding behind a tree. Deputies say someone had come to check on Martin Soto when he attacked them. Jose Perez says Soto demanded he give him a ride to the Bay Area and when he tried to get him to calm down, he pulled a pocket knife out and threatened him. Perez says he ran away and called police. Soto was found continually putting his hands behind his back, acting weird, crying, and chanting. They eventually arrested him for Criminal Threats, Kidnapping and Brandishing a Weapon. He was being held on $100,000.00 bail.

Over 200 million dollars reportedly spent to set up alternate care sites in the state, which didn’t do a lot when the virus was out of control over the winter holidays last year. That’s the word in a new report showing how the state accommodated sick people during the worst of coronavirus. The Associated Press reports digging through public information request reports from the departments of Finance and General Services and Health and Human Services. It shows the state spent as much as $43 million to set up eight sites, $48 million to hire contract employees and $96 million to operate them.

Another positive case of coronavirus at a local business. This one at Starbucks on Perkins in Ukiah. The Mendocino County COVID-19 Department Operations Center confirmed the case and warns anyone who was at the location on July 20th, 21st and 27th, 2021, may have been exposed and should getting tested right away if they’re unvaccinated, and if they are vaccinated but have symptoms. The managers at the Starbucks location reported responded swiftly to the case and made sure to test employees and contacted some customers they knew. The Public Health Officer Dr. Andy Coren reminding how important it is to stay home if you feel sick.

A man in Ukiah’s been arrested for illegal camping and driving a stolen car. Last week a Mendocino deputy on routine patrol saw 2 cars parked in an area known for illegal camping in a turnout down by the Russian River. The deputy stopped and went over to the cars, finding one empty, and the other with someone in it they’ve identified as Vinson Hill. The deputy called dispatch for a records check and found Hill had a couple of active warrants from Mendocino County. Also the car he was in had been reported stolen from Santa Rosa.  Hill was arrested for the warrants, possession of stolen property and unlawful display of evidence of registration. He was booked and held on $5,000.00 bail.

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