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Monthly Archives: April 2022

Lake County’s annual burn ban starts Sunday. The ban covers all open fires, but there are a few limited exceptions for agriculture, controlled burns, and public safety. The restriction has been around since 1986. Since then the County Air Quality Management District says the program has been successful reducing the risk for out of control fires and keeping the air clean. The Air Quality District says public cooperation is important, but if you violate the ban, you could face consequences. Among them: citations, fines, and orders to pay for the response to put the fire out or other damages. The ban remains in effect until CalFire declares the fire season over.

If you have a Lake County Library card, you can now check out a free pass to a California State Park. The three-year pilot program program allows library patrons access to a limited number of free passes, valid for a certain number of days, which get you into more than 200 state parks. Parks include Clear Lake State Park in Kelseyville, Anderson Marsh State Historic Park in Lower Lake, and Robert Louis Stevenson State Park south of Middletown. County Librarian Christoper Veach calls it a great way for people who use the library to discover the California’s great outdoors through its biggest-in-the-nation state park system. You can find more information on the library website or at any branch library.

California will allow some immigrants living in the state without legal permission to access Medi-Cal health insurance benefits starting this weekend. Immigrants over 49 who fall below certain income limits will be able to apply for full coverage from the state version of Medicaid beginning Sunday. Officials estimate that adds up to about 235,000 people. More than 220,000 others under 25 without documentation are already enrolled. The Department of Health Care Services, which administers Medi-Cal, is working with county officials, consumer advocates, and the state health insurance exchange to reach the newly eligible immigrants.

An investigation has been launched by the state attorney general about how fossil fuel and petrochemicals contribute to California pollution. Atty. Gen. Rob Bonta reported yesterday his office subpoenaed Exxon Mobil to uncover how the company may have covered up the public’s understanding of the harmful consequences of plastic. Bonta said for years the plastics industry has been deceiving the public saying recycling can solve the plastics crisis. But Bonta says instead fossil fuels like oil and gas are the raw material of most plastics and that’s been piling up and crowding waterways and oceans, making marine life ill and threatening human health. The state is also looking to do away with single use plastic for good, as one way to reduce plastic pollution. Bonta says about 90% of plastics end up in landfills, burned or flushed into the ocean.

Two teens in Mendocino County are missing. The Sheriff’s Office says they got a call the two 13 year olds, Legend Findsthefeather and Maria Kinsman vanished from Point Arena last night. The two reportedly took a bus to Coddingtown Mall in Santa Rosa and were last seen there around 3:30pm yesterday. The Sheriff’s office says they had conflicting info there was a white SUV somehow involved. Santa Rosa police sent out a Nixle alert for the two, but neither has any family in the area. A Be on the Lookout alert has been issued and police are asking anyone who may have seen the teens to call dispatch.

California’s with over a dozen states trying to coax the U.S. Postal Service into commissioning more electric vehicles so its eventually all electric. The states are suing to get the Service to stop buying gas-powered trucks and modernize the fleet instead. Three lawsuits were filed yesterday by the 15 states and environmental activists here in Calif. and in New York for a more comprehensive environmental review before the Service buys more vehicles. Those suing say the gas- or diesel-powered delivery vehicles could harm the environment for years. The delivery trucks have been in service since the late 1980’s and early nineties.

It’s finally here, the Crisis Residential Treatment facility for mental health. Measure B, the Mental Health Treatment Act funded much of the new facility which had its official ribbon cutting ceremony last year. But the construction wasn’t done yet due to COVID supply chain issues. This past January most of the facility was done, except they were waiting for a generator. Now the eight-bed complex is available for adults “experiencing a psychiatric crisis” for up to a one month stay. They are still waiting for that generator though. The Phoenix House will offer treatment, in a safe, welcoming, non-institutional residential setting.

Plans to build the Grocery Outlet have moved a step closer as three companies have submitted proposals for the environmental impact review. The Fort Bragg City Council approved of an agreement earlier this week for Best Development to get the review going, they’re paying for it. The company doing the review had a leg up since they were already doing work in the city. There were some objections though about the amount of work and how much time the company was reportedly committing to the review. The company says they’ll use some older studies, but some members of the public at the meeting spoke out against the idea. But the city council approved of the company for the review, De Novo, unanimously. The mayor recused himself though.

The state has a new plan to beat back climate change and be more proactive in the face of
extreme heat emergencies. The idea for lawmakers to fork over $300 million for an Extreme Heat Action Plan across California. And the Natural Resources Agency secretary says the extreme heat is a public health challenge and we need to take action to protect people. Some of the requested money would go to build emergency hot weather shelters so folks can go cool off and charge their electronics during heat storms. Other money to plant trees to create shade, green schoolyards so kids stay cool and encourage folks, if they can, to buy solar and energy-efficient appliances with help from the state. And even repaint your home with heat-reflective paint.

Somehow PG&E had a banner year so far. The company reports tripling their first quarter earnings for 2022 over last year’s. The company raking in over $475 million of profits. Some wildfire survivors are asking the company to use the take to underground powerlines quickly, before we see anymore catastrophic wildfires. The company announced in a recorded meeting they would work to underground powerlines. The profit may have come from raising customers rates.

Reports in Calif. say thousands of residents continue to struggle with mental health crises and many don’t have access to needed treatment. State Senator, and Senate Majority Leader Mike McGuire has a new bill to make sure all Californians with insurance have access to the so-called Coordinated Specialty Care. That means they have access to a personalized treatment plan with needed services, like guaranteed/longer term mental health care, access to housing, and help with educational and vocational goals. Currently many of the private health insurance companies and health plans cover the treatment. McGuire’s bill was approved in the Senate Health Committee unanimously. It would mean a patient would have a team with their regular doctor, a psychiatrist, and a case manager.

Lawmakers are looking to get more money for folks who file a malpractice lawsuit. If the bill moves through and makes it to the Governor, it wouldn’t have to become a ballot initiative instead. Right now the state doesn’t cap the amount patients can win in malpractice suits, but there is a limit on how much someone can win for non-material items like pain and suffering, at $250,000. It’s been a yearslong battle to get that limit up, with Doctors historically fighting the raising of limits, claiming it would explode their malpractice insurance premiums and that it could close community health clinics. Lawmakers are looking to gradually increase the limit over the next decade. The California Medical Association and the Consumer Attorneys of California, Californians Allied for Patient Protection support the move.

The state Fish and Game Commission on their toes at their meeting, tackling multiple issues. One is a regulation to ban the use of hydraulic pumps to catch clams, sand crabs and shrimp. It was already in the mix, but just a temporary regulation, which will become the standard. The Commission also approved its Pink (Ocean) Shrimp Fishery Management Plan, consistent with Oregon and Washington, so the marine animal will be part of a fishery, the first in the state with the Marine Stewardship Council sustainability certification. The Commission also considered listing southern California steelhead as threatened or endangered and said no to a petition to ban bear hunting.

After a father and son went missing after fishing in Humboldt Bay, their search was called off. The Coast Guard suspended the search for Scott Arbaugh of Eureka and his son Josh Arbaugh of Arcata. The pair took off from Fields Landing Tuesday using a small speedboat. They were reported missing by family members Tuesday night and the search began. Their sunken boat was found later that night about a ½ mile northeast of King Salmon. By yesterday the search was called off after over 50 hours of scouring the area. Helicopter and ground crews and dive teams searched.

The Save the Redwoods League says they’ve working to secure, then protect over 450 acres of coastal redwood forest in Mendocino County. It’s the Atkins Place property, which is critical habitat that connects Montgomery Woods State Natural Reserve and Bureau of Land Management protected lands. A major chunk of it is a coast redwood and Douglas-fir forest. There is about 1.25 miles of steelhead and coho salmon-bearing streams and grassland and ridgelines. The League says they’ll work to raise $1.3 million by June 30th to make the acquisition a reality. The land is located in the South Fork Big River watershed and is spawning habitat for steelhead trout and coho salmon, plus endangered foothill yellow-legged frogs and northern spotted owls, northern goshawks, white-tailed kites and other raptors.

A grant has been applied for by both Adventist Health, Mendocino County and the City of Fort Bragg to fix up Bainbridge Park which was chosen as a finalist in the State Farm Neighborhood Assist program. If they get the most votes, the park could win the grant. Votes are being tallied online until next Friday, May 6th. The contest is a choice between 100 proposals and whoever gets the most online votes wins $25,000. That will pay for part of the installation of two artificial turf soccer fields, which are part of a major upgrade at Bainbridge Park, the only public playground in the city.

Individuals can vote up to ten times a day through May 6 by visiting

A man in Ukiah has been arrested after he was seen on a motorcycle by police then took off at speeds over 85 mph. Police had previously noticed the bike in a hotel parking lot without the correct license plates, the ones that were on the motorcycle were for a different bike. The officer on the scene says when the rider saw him, they took off. The officer went after the bike which was going too fast for the area and flying through intersections, while passing other vehicles in a reckless manner. The guy eventually got off the bike and ran and refused to listen to police commands to stop. He was finally stopped and identified as Joseph A. Hoaglin. Hoaglin was booked for reckless evading and forged vehicle registration and held on $35,000.00 bail.

The Neighborhood Fire Safe Council is offering free wildfire safety home assessments. The council is looking for neighbors to do the assessments together so they can get info out to as many people at once as possible. They say, not to worry, it’s a non-judgmental, non-binding, non-regulatory risk-free educational opportunity. You schedule the time and place and a Mendocino County Fire Safe Council representative will visit to explain how you can assess wildfire risks at your home, review ways to lower your risk, and they’ll walk your property and share observations and answer questions.

To set up an evaluation session contact us at or 707-462-3662

Lake County may return to a standalone Human Resources department, not one that’s managed by the County Administrative Office. An idea broached by Supervisor Bruno Sabatier at this week’s Tuesday meeting. The agency had been standalone for decades, then coming under the auspices of the County Administrative Office various times for various reasons. Departing County Administrative Officer Carol Huchingson requested it be part of her office again, but now that she’s leaving office, her assistant will take over, but that means she’s oversee Human Resources as they search for Huchingson’s permanent replacement.

After a makeshift bomb was found in Lakeport, police are trying to figure out who left it behind. The homemade explosive device was found Tuesday night in the Grocery Outlet parking lot. Police and firefighters responded, and officers found it under a car. They say it looked like it was made of cardboard, powder, shrapnel, and a fuse. They said at the time it would not have exploded without being lit first. It was taken to a remote area to render it safe and officers are working to figure out how it got there and who made it.

A protest hearing against Lakeport’s long-awaited annexation of a section of S. Main Street is planned. The meeting is a week from tomorrow in the city council chambers. They will consider written protests about the annexation and won’t hear any testimony regarding the city’s application per se’.  The annexation is for around 137 acres, with 50 parcels, south of existing Lakeport city limits, and across from South Main Street and Soda Bay Road and east of Highway 29. The annexation process started in 2019 and the Lake Local Agency Formation Commission approved the annexation in March of this year, but there needs to be a protest proceeding because of some written protests from area neighbors.

A company looking at alternatives or a fix for the Orr Street Bridge have been in Ukiah hearing from locals. The project manager for the bridge handed out maps, snacks and comment cards with the transportation engineer. Some people complaining about what the work would bring, noise, pollution and traffic snarl-ups. Options on the table include removing the currently closed bridge and rebuilding with a pedestrian walkway or just building a new pedestrian bridge at the end of Myron Place, but that could mean the removal of a bunch of trees.

If you want to weigh in, email comments to or call 707-463-6200.

As COVID-19 cases rise in Sonoma County, more people are seeking testing. The county reported an average of 16-hundred people per day were getting tested, up 200 from last week. Sonoma County’s case rate is at 14 cases per day per 100-thousand residents. It was at six or seven cases per 100-thousand residents a few weeks ago. It reflects a steady rise in cases nationwide, largely blamed on the B-A-Two Omicron subvariant.

Intro: Local lawmakers and Native American leaders getting behind Legislation to add almost four-thousand acres to the Berryessa Snow Mountain National Monument. The bill would add an area known as Walker Ridge to the monument and change its name to Condor Ridge, a translation of the native name “Molok Luyuk.” Ben Deci with the Yocha Dehe Wintun Nation, says the land has been inhabited by local tribes for more than 11-thousand years.

 :10  "It’s a meeting place, a traveling route, a trading route. It has a lot of cultural significance to the people who've lived here for millennia, before the first European settlers."

Tag: The Bureau of Land Management currently oversees the area. A few years ago, developers proposed a windmill project that did not come to fruition. Backers of adding the land to the monument say it would protect the area from future development.

Second Cut: Lake County Supervisor E-J Crandell, a member of the Robinson Rancheria Tribe, says the windmills would have endangered the raptors native to the area.

 :09  "The hawks are very special for regalia making, and they’re a sign in our culture for a good outcome. So, if you see a hawk in the area, you get a sense of peace."

Tag: The bill would also formalize a partnership between the U-S Forest Service, B-L-M and the tribes to co-manage the land for historic preservation, archaeological sites and forest health. The Senate version was introduced by Senators Dianne Feinstein and Alex Padilla. It mirrors a House version, sponsored by Representatives John Garamendi and Mike Thompson.

A group of Calif. mayors are calling on the Governor’s office and lawmakers to find $3 billion over three years from the state budget. The so-called flexible homeless funding would be approved every year from the Homeless Housing, Assistance, and Prevention program. The money coming out of that fund would help them deal with homelessness in creative ways, like building tiny cabins and finding empty lots to use for those who live in RVs and other vehicles. They’d also be able to provide thousands of new shelter beds and help as many as 25,000 homeless people. Last year the state approved $7.4 billion for about 30 housing and homelessness programs which will be spent over three years and the Governor has proposed spending $2 billion more over two more years.

The Mendocino County Extreme Winter Shelter has closed for the season. Last November the Fort Bragg City Council approved of a proposal by the city’s mayor for the shelter, which was unanimously approved. But because of a limited budget, the shelter is only open for extreme weather. The city will use local motel vouchers for shelter through a contract with the county. Police will hand out the vouchers on days the weather is considered severe because of heavy rain and/or lower than normal winter temperatures. Police distributed 339 vouchers last year.

Hunting licenses are available for purchase for next season. You can also apply for the Big Game Drawing online. State residents have until June 2nd for the Big Game drawing. The state Dept. of Fish and Wildlife is paperless with an entire digital format to follow. The agency no longer prints and mails out the hunting digest, it’s all electronic. They also say to please not use lead ammunition as it’s illegal in the state. There are some tweaks to the schedule due to shorter seasons for deer, elk and pronghorn antelope because of wildfires and public land closures, so check to see if you’re eligible for a refund.

After reports of a burglary in Middletown, the Lake County Sheriff’s Office reported to a home to find the front door was forced open. A neighbor also told the homeowner a lock on their storage container was cut off. A Deputy who responded found several piles of stolen property and food wrappers. The Deputy noted not many places are open to get food late at night, so they went to the Store 24 gas station and reviewed security footage from that day and saw a truck there that a neighbor also saw. Two suspects known to the Deputy showed up on security footage, so he secured a search warrant. Last week several Deputies went with Detectives and arrested Ronald Whitmire and Sunny McClain, of Clearlake and found more stolen property on them.

The first mental health crisis training center in Mendocino County has opened at the old Jehovah’s Witness Church on Redwood Valley East. The grand opening for the Behavioral Health Regional Training Center had a host of local officials, included former Sheriff Tom Allman, a champion of addressing the issue. Those at the center will spend their days educating local first responders, law enforcement and mental health professionals. Allman, former CEO Carmel Angelo and the county’s Behavioral Health Director Jenine Miller all addressed a small crowd gathered for the opening. The center has virtual training modules featuring simulated crises. The center was partially funded with Measure B funds, along with three mobile crisis vans and two full-time positions.

An “explosive type device“ has been retrieved from the parking lot of the Grocery Outlet in Lakeport. The police chief told Mendo Fever someone found what looked like a homemade, tube-type explosive with a fuse. They told store employees who immediately evacuated. The police chief says one of his officers with explosives experience reported to the scene, and they informed the public to steer clear of the area. The device was taken to a remote area, and was not a danger to the public. Investigators said late last night there was “live powder” in the improvised device but it would have had to be lit to explode.

A man has been arrested in Covelo after a woman reports her husband had assaulted her at an elementary school. Deputies say Jose OjedaMaldonado texted the woman several times to meet him at the school and when she arrived, she says he grabbed her by the throat, pulled a knife on her, pushed her up against a wall and threatened her. He let her go and she called police. He was arrested and held on $100,000.00 bail.

The Lake County Board of Supervisors considering their own salaries at their latest meeting. Supes didn’t take any action though. It was the final meeting for the departing county administrative officer, Carol Huchingson. She and the Human Resources Director Pam Samac delivered a comparison report on supervisors’ salaries against 12 other counties around the state. The same counties were used in a comparison study which the board then approved of $21 million in raises in the fall of 2020, but only $5 million was approved. But last fall they approved the rest. But they have not given the green light to get their own raises. They’ve been making nearly $64,000/year for some time. But the study shows they should be in the neighborhood of nearly $86,000/year.

The latest Lake County Wine Alliance Auction is in the planning stages. The yearly auction will be Sept. 17 at The Mercantile by Shannon Family of Wines in Kelseyville. The Wine Alliance Auction is their largest fundraiser each year. They distribute the money to local charities. The first time they did it, they were able to deliver over $31,000 to local organizations. And last year, they raised a quarter million dollars. Altogether the Wine Alliance has given over $2,327,000 to help 57 local organizations.

Wildfire safety forever on our minds in Northern Calif. To help make it a reality, there are some micro-grants for neighborhood groups and local fire departments. The Mendocino County Fire Safe Council (MCFSC) announced its Micro-Grant Program has gathered $50,000 for wildfire-safety projects. The grants are from $2,000 to $6,000. The Fire Safe Council got more than $105,000 in requests though. The final decision included money for the Bell Springs Fire Safe Council (North County) for water tanks; the Comptche Volunteer Fire Department and Disaster Preparedness Team for water system infrastructure; the Laytonville Fire Department/Long Valley Fire Protection District—education, implementation, and enforcement of weed abatement, Redwood Coast Fire Protection District for a large water tank; and finally for the String Creek/Tartar Canyon Fire Safe Council in Willits area to remove hazardous dead trees.

A lobbyist working with PG&E who asked the Governor’s office for a loan so fire survivors get all the money they’re owed, quit. Patrick McCallum reportedly asked the Governor’s staff if they could secure a $1.5 billion loan to add into the PG&E Fire Victim Trust. A recent public radio investigation said the trust was slow paying victims and there were giant attorney fees and big money paid to consultants and the California State University system. But McCallum is married to the Sonoma State University President, who recently left him after several women reported sexual harassment against him.

The county is looking for anyone interested, and qualified in serving on the 2022/2023 Mendocino County Civil Grand Jury. The application period has opened for the Superior Court with the deadline, Friday, May 27th. The new jurors will be sworn in one month later. They tout it as a great way to learn about the inner workings of government at the same time providing a valuable service to the community. There are 19 members of the Civil Grand Jury who serve for one year with the power to investigate the operations of county, city and district governments; provide civil oversight of local government departments and agencies; and respond to citizen complaints. The Jury sets its own agenda and meeting schedule. Jurors make $25 per full panel meeting, $10 per committee meeting and committee attendance at public meetings. Mileage is also reimbursed with free onsite parking too.

A family in Lake Tahoe got quite the surprise. Hearing a weird noise like rumbling under their home this winter, they found out a family of bears had hibernated beneath the home all winter. The mama with three cubs and one adopted orphaned cub were in the crawl space under the home for the winter. The wildlife group, the BEAR League posted the story on Facebook, adding the family also heard snoring but ignored it. But they woke from their long slumber last Tuesday and the family then called the BEAR League for help.

A new report sheds light on how well California would have done without COVID19 vaccines. Researchers at UC San Francisco working with the state Dept. of Public Health reports on what the state might have had to deal with, had there been no shots after the pandemic broke out. The report says the vaccines prevented as many as 1.5 million coronavirus infections, nearly 73,000 hospitalizations, and almost 20,000 deaths in California. The report was published last Friday in the journal JAMA Network Open. A co-author of the study says they know the inoculations work, and that they allowed people to go to work, be with their families safely and not to have such socioeconomic disruption.

Two people got stranded, one for nearly a week in Lassen County, after their truck got stuck on a dirt road in the snow. The woman, 52-year-old Sheena Gullett ate snow and rationed the six pack of yogurt she had with her. Her friend 48-year-old Justin Lonich hiked out after Gullett lost the soles of her boots and stayed back in the truck. Lonich got out and hitched a ride to Susanville and reported Gullett missing to the Sheriff’s office. There was a search, but Lonich lost his bearings and couldn’t remember exactly where they got lost. He went with searchers and last Wednesday, she was found. She says she saw the rescue helicopter, but apparently, they didn’t immediately see her, as she was stuck in heavy snow.

The Mendocino County Library is offering Memory kits at its branches as many in the community are living with or taking care of someone who has Alzheimer’s, or other forms of dementia, or cognitive impairment. The library won a grant from the State Library’s Mental Health Initiative to develop the kits. They help so folks communicate with each other as they deal with memory loss. The kits include activities, books, movies, and music that center around a theme or a decade. The kits can be checked out with a library card.

For more information, please visit or contact the Mendocino County Cultural Services Agency at 234-2873.

A man from Willits, whose already been to Ukraine is going back with supplies in an effort to help refugees leave the war-torn country. David Caspino, an EMT who served an Army medic already traveled to Ukraine along with $60,000 worth of donated insulin, medical supplies, VHF radios and body armor. He stayed on to help women and children leave the capital of Kyiv to get to the Poland border. He’s looking for donations again before he heads back late this week or the beginning of next. He says there’s a lot of sex trafficking in the war zone, and that’s the main reason he’s going back to help. He says last time he helped as many as 400 people.

During National Volunteer Appreciation Week, the Fort Bragg Food Bank says they’ve delivered celebratory lunches and small gifts to local businesses as a way to honor their work. They have around 50 volunteers and a student team from Anchor Academy. National Volunteer Appreciation Week started last Friday. The Food Bank says all of the volunteer lunches are being provided by the owner of Sugar Coated Catering and the gift bags are filled with virgin olive oil and chocolates. The gift bags are for volunteers who donate over two hours a week. They also contain a voucher to exchange for a prize from Dragonfly Wellness.

As new restrictions on abortion take hold across the nation, Calif. is bracing for an influx of patients in need. As a matter of fact, reports say abortion clinics in Calif. are even building new facilities near transit hubs and training more staff. Lawmakers are also moving Legislation to expand how many providers are allowed in the state, how they can provide financial assistance to women who come here for help and how lawmakers can protect the doctors who treat them. The president and CEO of Planned Parenthood in Calif. says people are looking to California as a safe haven, and she says it’s our “moral imperative” to provide the leadership that people are looking for. Planned Parenthood has about half of the abortion clinics in California and says they’ve already treated dozens of out-of-state patients after Texas adopted a strict law restricting abortion to only six weeks of pregnancy.

A new business popped up in Kelseyville. Nearly two weeks ago, the Bell Haven Flower Store opened on Main St. They carry flowers from their own Soda Bay Farm. They say they are all picked within 24 hours before, calling them “locally grown, not flown.” The owners originally hail from Los Angeles but spent their honeymoon in Lake County and spent 40 years of summers there. They then bought an old R.V. Park and cleared it out to build their flower farm. They started at Farmer’s Markets and now have eight full time employees and have four permanent greenhouses.

The Lake County Planning Commission says yes to a new resort on the shore in Lucerne. It was a unanimous vote for the commission at their meeting last week. Nicole Farb applied for a design review permit for her Nikki Island Resort on 1.5 acres of State Highway 20. The proposed resort was deemed to be in alignment with the general plan, shorelines plan and zoning ordinance, as well as being compatible with existing development. The proposal is for nine overnight lodging units or one story “casitas” and a one-story house which once was a Pearl Harbor survivor’s home. It will be converted into a gathering space, lobby, kitchen and dining room. There will also be an outdoor kitchen, in-ground pool and hot tub, new landscaping, parking and pedestrian paths.

A group of Mendocino County marijuana farmers say it’s been an uphill battle after a recent crash in wholesale cannabis prices. 20 farmers working with a delivery agent in Sacramento to sell to folks in Sacramento and Butte counties. Apparently the program would give the farmers a bigger cut that would have gone to dispensaries and other delivery services. The North Bay Business Journal interviewed a small farmer from Covelo who said they were getting only $250 to $300/pound, not nearly enough to survive, when a year or so ago, they’d been getting $1,000 a pound. The journal reports wholesale marijuana prices in Calif. dropped to the lowest prices they’ve been at since the drug was legalized in the state. Farmers were trying to grow more to keep up with demand after the pandemic hit, but since many lost their jobs, they couldn’t afford it after their stimulus checks and extended unemployment dried up.

An anonymous artist dubbed the Velvet Bandit has spread artwork across Mendocino County. Mendo Fever reports the paste-up street artist has often erected pieces in the county even though she lives in Santa Rosa. Her work can be seen in Fort Bragg, Boonville, Ukiah, Willits, and Hopland, with the two latest installations across from Real Goodz in Hopland and by the Van Motel in Willits. The news site reports the Velvet Bandit has a strong social media following and has garnered a lot of press coverage because of her unique street art which is often features a call to action. Velvet’s day job is as a lunch aide at a Santa Rosa School.

Another mountain lion sighting in Redwood Valley and a warning for those living near the train tracks to be on the lookout. First a resident saw a lion carry off a cat, then another saw one slinking around her home where her kids regularly feed their family farm animals. Last week another said he saw one on his property, now Mendo Fever reports, yet another, this time a cub. That was after midnight Saturday. The animal seen on home surveillance video stalking an area previously visited by a bigger lion. The California Department of Fish and Wildlife has info for you to learn what to do in case a mountain lion comes onto your property, call or visit their website for their Human-Wildlife Conflict Toolkit.

Several hundred homes in northern Mendocino and southern Humboldt counties without power. PG&E first reported the outage for 1,300 customers around 1:20 yesterday afternoon with an estimated restoration 4 hours later. But it wasn’t until seven hours later that the power was back on after a power pole south of Garberville somehow caught fire.

The married woman who admitted she faked an abduction to go hang with her ex boyfriend has been served divorce papers. Sherri Papini’s husband reportedly filed for divorce last week. Five years ago the 39 year old disappeared, then reappeared emaciated, with some sort of skin branding. She blamed it on two Hispanic women after a nationwide search. She also accepted more than $30,000 from a state assistance fund for kidnapping victims. Her husband called 911 after finding her phone down the street from their house, and some of her hair tangled around earbuds. In actuality she spent three weeks away from her Redding home with her husband and children, in San Diego with her ex. She pleaded guilty for the scheme and will be sentenced in July.

A proposal for a new gas station, convenience store and fast food joint on the agenda for the next Clearlake Planning Commission meeting. A conditional use permit application along with an environmental assessment will be considered tomorrow night. They would sell alcohol at the convenience store, there would be office space and there would be a drive through car wash too in the Clearlake Shopping Center. The applicant says she plans to start construction in the fall.

A continuing fundraiser has been organized by the Art Center Ukiah and the Corner Gallery for residents of Ukraine. The handmade items are traditional Ukrainian wax working decorations of Easter eggs. But they’re all done by local artists and are one-of-a-kind. The artwork has been practiced for centuries in Ukraine, where they make eggs for Easter, then decorate them with nature symbols representing the rebirth of the earth after the long, hard winter. The fundraiser is to show solidarity to Ukraine with 100% of the proceeds going to the World Central Kitchen. They help prepare food for Ukrainian shelters, hospitals, transit stations and more.

The Clean Up Clearlake campaign has gotten underway. The city’s working to get rid of blight due to years of illegal dumping. On Saturday, Clean Up Clearlake took over the area known as the “The Avenues.” One neighbor told the Record Bee he had spent a couple years after he moved in clearing out hazardous vegetation on two side streets. Then after a while he and other neighbors started clearing out the whole neighborhood of trash. Neighbors have been talking about this with city and county leaders at meetings and code enforcement has come out and cleaned two properties in Clearlake Oaks and Nice after several requests and giving out  citations. The sites, mostly in tax default and possibly set for auction which will be held May 27th. Their owners have until May 26th to get up to date on their payments or forfeit them to the sale.

A campaign to save water in Calif. by getting our neighbors to turn off their sprinklers in the hopes it will rain. Save Our Water reminding of rainy weather tips as a storm is expected to bring some precipitation. Turn off your irrigation system when there is rain in the forecast and let nature do its part, watering your yard. Then they say to allow soil to dry between rain and watering, not to overwater your trees, especially drought-tolerant species. And if you can, install drip irrigation & add a smart controller. Also, use mulch which can save 20 – 30 gallons of water per 1000 sq. ft.

After reports of a stabbing in Clearlake, Deputies found a male victim at Adventist Health Hospital. They say the victim was attacked outside Maynard’s Sports Bar in Lower Lake by several people. They were moved to an out-of-county hospital and reported in stable condition. Major Crimes at the Sheriff’s Office is investigating and says they do have some leads but would like anyone who may have seen something to call Detective Jeff Mora at (707)262-4224 or by email at

A new grant has been announced by Lake County for those who’ve been negatively impacted due to the criminalization of cannabis. The Cannabis Local Equity Program Grants are compliments of a partnership of the California Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development (GO-Biz). They will first offer direct grants which will go to smaller cultivators. More programs are going to be offered, but not quite yet. They will take applications and get back to folks who apply when the grants are available. 

A man from Covelo has been arrested after a domestic incident. The Sheriff’s office reports 32-year-old Lee Anthony Joaquin was arrested after a call to a home on Highway 162.  Deputies say the woman and Joaquin had been in a relationship for a long time, but recently separated.  She says during a child exchange, he became upset and hit her several times with his hands and kicked her in the ribs causing visible injuries. Since he was on probation, he was arrested for violating that, and domestic violence and held without bail.

A 75-year-old man has been arrested in Fort Bragg after reports of sex assault on a child under 12. The Sheriff’s Office reports getting a call regarding possible oral copulation of a 10-year-old child. Deputies met Steven Helm and a witness to the incident. After several interviews, detectives found Helm was the responsible party of the alleged abuse as he had continuous access to the child who was known to him. He’s charged with oral copulation of a child under 10 years-old and continuous sexual abuse of child under 14 years-old. He’s being held on $200,000 bail. Detectives are also asking anyone else who may have had contact with Helm to call them at 707-463-4086 or the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office Tip-line at 707-234-2100.

After the “People’s Convoy” protest in Canada, a similar group headed to Calif. When the group protested in Oakland, they were not well-received. Angry neighbors pelted the passing vehicles with eggs and yelled for them to leave. The incident went viral after the convoy passed a Safeway supermarket Friday. Some of the people driving the big rigs had their windows rolled down and got hit by the eggs. SFGate reported some in the convoy were overheard on CB radios saying they had to go get their vehicles washed after the egging. They went into the Bay Area to head over to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s home to put up US flags on her lawn. Apparently they couldn’t figure out where her home was so they went to a member of the state Legislature’s home instead.

A new report says the state had more rain this month then all of the three preceding months. The California Data Exchange Center and Dept. of Water Resources reported double the amount of precipitation in April than January, February and March together. Some Tahoe area ski resorts were able to stay open as snowstorms hit the higher mountainous regions.

The Lake County Health Services and Water Resources Departments along with the Big Valley Band of Pomo Indians have some advice about a potentially dangerous natural toxin cropping up in Clear Lake and other bodies of water over the next few months. As temperatures begin to rise, there’s concern about contamination from Cyanobacteria in lakes, rivers and streams. Cyanobacteria are microscopic organisms that naturally occur in all freshwater and marine aquatic ecosystems. Concentrations usually are low and harmless to humans and animals. However, when conditions are favorable with high nutrients and warm weather, the organisms can rapidly grow to form visible icky-looking blue-green algae blooms. People are most often exposed while swimming or participating in other recreational activities in and on the water. The most common routes are direct skin contact, accidental ingestion of contaminated water, or accidental inhalation of water droplets in the air — for instance while water skiing. If you come in contact, you could have some nasty stomach and other symptoms that could be severe with a long exposure. The best bet is to avoid any algae on the water and watch for warning signs that will be posted if tests show any bacteria in the area. The county has information on its web page—as do the EPA and CDC.

Lake County officials say they’re keeping an eye on illegal cannabis operations and the water they use. Planning Commissioner Erin McCarrick and Code Enforcement Manager Marcus Beltramo told those at the Clearlake Judge’s Breakfast forum this week that while there is a state reporting system in place for cultivators to help track water usage across the industry, such a system only includes permitted operations. That leaves the state to guess the total amount of water used by illicit cannabis grows. Beltramo says that the Code Enforcement Department recently got a grant to hire a dedicated officer, who deals with all cannabis-related issues including illegal growers and water use. He also says the county is focusing on large illegal operations and now has the ability under a new law to cite those responsible, which could result in stiff fines.

The Clearlake City Council has adopted a plan to pay for millions of dollars in roadwork over the next few years. Lake Co News reports the council has unanimously approved direct financing for the projects through a bank. Council members did have some questions, asking city staff about the recent rise in interest rates that a bank would change. They were told it still makes sense to lock in rates now rather than wait to see where they eventually go. Council members say it is important to move ahead with road work and repave a significant number of city streets as quickly as possible.

PG&E is looking for approval to pull in more revenue from customers to pay for improved facilities and operations. That could mean higher bills to cover the cost of capital projects like burying miles of infrastructure underground to keep it from sparking wildfires. PGE bills have already gone up twice this year. If the state PUC approves the request, you could see your bill go up between 1 and 2 percent a month by next January.

The rate of positive Covid-19 tests in California is going up. The State Deparment of Public Health reports California’s test positivity for COVID-19 has increased to 3.1%, up from the 2.6% just reported Tuesday. That puts the rate at its highest point in about 2 months. The latest numbers represent a small fraction of the peaks from the omicron surge, but the metrics are now trending consistently upward. This is the first time the graph lines have risen since the omicron variant first emerged in December. The bottom line — those new numbers are causing new worries about potential a fifth wave of the pandemic.

Even with the new numbers, the state is making some tweaks to its Covid policy at work. The The Cal/OSHA Standards Board says there should be no distinction between vaccinated and unvaccinated workers while rules about barriers and physical distancing have been dropped to focus on ventilation and air filtration. Requirements for surface cleaning in offices have also been scrapped. The Board says it is time for a more flexible approach while adapting rules to the changing nature of the pandemic.

The Legislature has taken a dramatic step as a way to lower the standard for the amount of water people can use in their homes during the drought. Right now the standard is residential indoor water use is 55 gallons/person/day. Those who use more water than they are allowed don’t get into any trouble, but the state then requires water agencies to allow the same amount to be used by all customers. State regulators measured last year at about 48 gallons/person/day or less and recommended state lawmakers lower it further to encourage more conservation. Yesterday the state Senate voted to lower it to 47 gallons beginning in 2025; and 42 gallons in 2030. The Assembly still has to vote on it to get it to the Governor’s desk for signature.

The state Department of Public Health has a new Spanish and English language WhatsApp chatbot to fight misinformation about COVID-19. It’s a partnership with Meta or Facebook. Those who use the service will be fed up-to-date info regarding the safety of vaccines, how to get vaccinated, and how to get digital records of vaccinations. The state says this will reinforce the commitment to make sure all have access to vaccines through a data-driven and equity-centered approach. There are other ways the chatbot fights misinformation to reach out to Californians and make sure they’ve been vaccinated and boosted.

It’s free to all and can be accessed by scanning a QR code or texting “hola” to 833-422-1090.
For more info, visit or call the state’s COVID-19 hotline at 1-833-422-4255 (833-4CA-4ALL).

The former director of the pharmacy at Adventist Health Ukiah Valley is in trouble related to fake vaccination cards. The US Dept. of Justice charged Ranna Shamiya for supposedly selling bogus COVID-19 cures to patients and creating falsified vaccination cards. She was found to be working with a naturopath out of Napa, Dr. Juli Mazi. The fed says Shamiya used her ability to get medical information and then hand it over to Mazi with “legitimate lot numbers for FDA-authorized COVID-19 vaccines” so the vaccination cards looked real, when they were not. There were over 20 people charged nationwide for COVID-19 fraud schemes similar to Shamiya’s.

The Mendocino County Board of Supervisors could be about to change the way cannabis is taxed and how much permits cost. At their meeting Tuesday, the Board, who had their first in person and online meeting in two years, discussed ways to bring down cannabis taxes and come up with a way to freeze permit costs for inactive cultivation sites. The two items were turned into a single agenda matter. There was support for both measures as growers have been complaining for a while about the high rates. The board is also considering a tax reduction for current growers with Supervisor Williams proposing a 50% cut. County staff reported nearly $7 million in taxes have not been collected and last year about half of permitted cultivators didn’t pay taxes.

After a fire broke out in the parking lot of the Safeway on State St., fire officials pegged it on how a car’s battery was wired. Mendo Fever reports the fire was coming out of the car’s engine. There was smoke billowing into the sky that appeared to be coming from the car’s wheel well and engine compartment. Police had to break the car’s window to try to release the hood, but it melted. They used 2 fire extinguishers to work the fire until firefighters arrived. They cut through the car’s engine bay to finally get the flames out. The owner of the car was not there at the time.

Another mountain lion seen in Redwood Valley. Now a resident says one of his cat’s and a neighbor’s dog are missing. Mendo Fever reports Chris Van Patten said the animals have been missing since the lion was caught on a home security system camera April 16th. He says a lion was on his property April 8th and his Ring camera caught the animal slinking up towards the camera. Then again April 16th, another shot of the animal scoping out the environment. The news site says they are sending the video to the California Department of Fish and Wildlife because the mountain cat had on a tracking collar.

The Ukiah Unified School District Board of Trustees says it wants to change to trustee area elections. The board held public hearings on the matter twice last month, then new maps were drawn up in accordance to the Federal Voting Rights Act, the California Voting Rights Act, and community input. They released the maps at the beginning of April, then last week the board had one of two public meetings on the maps. The input the Board received changed the maps again and they will do the same after the second meeting which is next Wednesday.

You can view the latest maps at Please email to provide feedback on the maps. For more information, please contact UUSD Communications Officer Doug Shald at 707.472.5005 or

State Senator Mike McGuire’s bill to get PG&E to underground their wiring has passed two major policy committees. The bill is supported by Cal Fire firefighters and passed the Senate Energy Committee and the Governance & Finance Committee. McGuire says it’s been far too long that PG&E has failed its customers, making California, unsafe. He says the company has underfunded modernizing their equipment and wildfire safety with devastating impacts. He says the only way to avoid future catastrophe is to move power lines underground in the most high fire risk regions. He says his bill will save lives and ratepayers money.

The Mendocino County Public Health Office out with a warning about a local business with COVID19 exposure. Shanachie Pub in Willits had a case of COVID show up last week. So the office warns the public if they were at the pub last Friday, April 15th, they could have been exposed and should get tested. The health office says the facility’s management responded quickly to the positive case and they appreciate their cooperation. Public health says they only publicize the business because contract tracing is nearly impossible.

A woman from Concord has been arrested after a domestic violence dispute in Boonville. The Mendocino County Sheriff’s Dept. reports getting a call to the 14000 block of Highway 128, but when they got there, the reporting party was gone. Then later they got a call from a man who reported he pulled over off Highway 128 because he was assaulted while driving. They reported again to the area finding the man along with Ekaterina Alyabyeva. The two were dating, but deputies say the man had visible injuries on his body, so the woman was arrested. Alyabyeva is charged with Felony Domestic Violence Battery and booked into jail on $25,000.00 bail.

A man from Ukiah has been arrested on various drug charges after Deputies on routine patrol spotted someone parked with their engine idling. Daryan Grivette was contacted and recognized from previous interactions with law enforcement. He’s on active felony probation with terms for a search. Deputies found a commercial quantity of suspected methamphetamine in a backpack, along with some heroin and packaging materials. The Deputies also found a commercial quantity of marijuana inside the vehicle too. So, Grivette was arrested for Possession Controlled Substance For Sale, Felony Transportation Controlled Substance For Sale and Misdemeanor Transportation Marijuana For Sale and held on $35,000.00 bail.

The parents of middle and high schoolers in Calif are going to be warned about the dangers of guns if a new bill passes and makes it to the Governor for signature. The state Senate Education Committee said no to a bill calling the idea an invasion of privacy because it required school officials be informed if guns are kept at a student’s home. Now Sen. Anthony Portantino redrafted the bill, taking out that bit. The new version passed the committee yesterday. Schools would now have to include information in yearly notices about the safe storage of firearms. Similar language in another bill passed the state Assembly.

Mandatory pay for workers impacted by COVID19 may be here until the end of the year. The Legislature had allowed for the benefit to stay in place through September. But now OSHA is considering until the end of the year. The seven-member Occupational Safety and Health Standards Board is taking up the matter at a meeting today. The workplace safety rules are expiring early next month. The California Chamber of Commerce though has come out saying businesses are concerned about the cost of continuing and there’s confusion around the uncapped exclusion pay since the Legislature already approved it.

After a 14-year-old girl from McKinleyville asked her dad to take her to Kentucky to meet a boy she met online, she disappeared. Caitlyn Watkins has been missing since April 8th. Her dad reported she went to school that day, and when he went to pick her up, she wasn’t there. Her mom says she has medicine she needs to take, and she left that and other personal belongings behind. Mom says the girl did call her, but she doesn’t know where she is. Anyone with any info on the 14-year-old is asked to call the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Department.

Pacific Gas and Electric Company reports paying property taxes and franchise fees of over $464 million to 50 counties, 246 local cities and one district where the company has gas and electric infrastructure. The CFO of the energy company says the payments are important ways they can help with local economies and support essential public services. Last week PG&E paid over $310 million in property taxes covering January to June of this year. The last tax year of July 1st of 2021 to June 30th of 2022, the company paid over $621 million. Lake County has been paid $1,101,814, Mendocino – $2,220,860 and Sonoma – $10,623,581.

The Hopland Municipal Advisory Council hosted their monthly meeting where they got an update from the Mendocino County Sheriff Matt Kendall and Hopland Fire Chief Mitch Franklin on various happenings. Mendo Fever reports they discussed a Caltrans project downtown, The “Hopland 101 Project”, new pedestrian street lighting during the roadwork, coming back to in-person meetings, and the possibility they’ll host a candidate forum for the 5th District Supervisor race.

The latest on the old Palace Hotel which was in receivership is that it’s sold again. This time, the new buyer said she’d like to upgrade the building to have a marketplace on the first floor featuring shops, restaurants, and bars. Minal Shankar’s vision was revealed at the latest City Council meeting. She is reported to be a former investment banker and venture capitalist in the Bay Area, Canada, and the East Coast who moved to the Ukiah Valley. Mendo Fever reports Shankar has global interests and has worked in executive positions with Brevet Capital, Northgate Capital, and JP Morgan. She attended the prestigious Stern School of Business at New York University. The Palace was in receivership and sold to a couple with local motel and hotel operations and the receivership was dissolved two weeks ago. And Shankar has entered into a purchase agreement for the building.

The Lakeport City Council will allow spending over $1.1 million in federal money that came from the first stimulus after COVID started. The money from the American Rescue Plan Act to be used on a trio of projects. City staff gathered info on what was a priority after the first chunk of money arrived from the Fed last July. The other half of the stimulus is supposed to arrive in the next year. There is roadwork on South Main Street that will cost almost $2 million dollars, renovations at the Silveira Community Center at $1.3 million; and water and sewer projects that all add up to over $2 million. It ended with a vote to use the money on road projects and await funding for the rest.

The Ukiah City Council has approved a permit for a cannabis business to take up three vacant suites by The Ukiah Library. The business applied already, so the permit was just renewed. But the City of Ukiah Zoning Administrator told the council there needed to be major improvements to the “blighted” building within six months. He said there is no business at the site and he wanted to know what the status of the project was. The permit applicant Wine Country Cannasseurs said they ran into difficulty when COVID hit. They were told if they got the business online within six months and made cosmetic improvements to the building so it doesn’t look blighted, then the permit would continue for one year.

Mendocino College’s Ag. Dept. is holding a plant sale. It’s the first time in two years the spring sale has happened, due to the pandemic. It’s happening during two weekends, this weekend, April 22-23 and next weekend, the 29-30. They’re opened on sale days from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday and 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday. They report having thousands of vegetable starts, annual and perennial plants. You can also shop online at their website if you want to and pick up your plants later, boxed and ready. That isn’t available though until May 5th, with pickups from May 9 to May 13.

The Cobb Area Council will adopt the Cobb Mountain community resilience and development strategy at their next meeting. The meeting on Zoom tonight after two years of work on the project. They got a grant from the Federal Home Loan Bank of San Francisco and the Community First Credit Union for long term development. A local nonprofit put together after the Valley Fire, the Seigler Springs Community Redevelopment Association (SSCRA) aims to help communities vulnerable to disasters so they can organize and plan for the future. They follow the model, “Community Capitals”: natural, built, social, financial, cultural, political and human, to focus on community. They say they are looking at renewal and regeneration over the next ten years. You’ll be able to see the finished project at the currently under construction Cobb Area Council website soon.

The state Legislature has pushed through a bill to make it easier for Californians to sue gun-makers. Some say the legislation could put gun manufacturers out of business. One measure looks to outlaw ghost guns, another requires sellers to install digital video surveillance systems. There are several in the mix after mass shootings and a shootout near the State Capitol where six people were killed and a dozen wounded. These bills would essentially skirt federal law, since it’s illegal right now nationally to sue gun makers. But some liability suits are allowed. Following in New York’s footsteps, when that state approved calling the lawsuits, public nuisances. The state of California already boasts some of the country’s strictest firearm laws.

The Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens has a fun event for the whole family this weekend. The Bumble Bees and Beneficials Family Field Day is happening Sunday. They’re hosting in the Education Center with self-guided field exploration, storytelling, music, bug displays, and seed bomb building. The Garden Manager says they’ve always got loads of bumble bees, hummingbirds, newts, snakes, skunks, and more. The event is from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Admission tickets must be purchased in advance. Register for classes and pay admissions at

Caltrans has a plan to widen the Jack Peters Creek Bridge. The agency had a webinar on the Widening and Rail Upgrade Project a couple weeks ago with a Q&A session. The bridge would be repaired to a point where it meets current design standards with widening enough for two 12-foot lanes, two six-foot-wide shoulders, and a six-foot-wide pedestrian walkway. They also plan to upgrade the railings. Right now the bridge only has a one foot shoulder on either side, not near enough room for disabled vehicles, pedestrians, or bicycles. The project will take nearly one year, but will happen over two construction seasons, that means one lane traffic with delays up to 25 minutes. Still more public comment hearings ahead.

The Mendocino County Public Health Office is out with another statement about quarantines and isolations. The health officer is clarifying the statewide Isolation Order for positive COVID patients is still in effect even though Dr. Coren rescinded the local Order for Isolation and Quarantine in Mendocino County. So if someone tests positive for COVID19 they must isolate to protect others for five days if they have a negative test, no fever or symptoms. For others they have to go the full ten days, if they have no fever and their symptoms are resolving. The state’s quarantine recommendation has ended for the general public. Those exposed should get tested and wear a mask for ten days, but can still go to work, school or participate in regular activities with a negative test.

Several hikers out on the Lost Coast had to be rescued by the Coast Guard. On Facebook, the US Coast Guard from Humboldt Bay posted a helicopter crew plucked three stranded hikers from the Lost Coast Monday night in inclement weather, after rain-flooded creeks, and high seas cut off their only routes out. One of the trio posted on social media too, that they had a good first day and night, the next day got windy, but when they hit the Cooksie Creek, it was moving swiftly and knee deep, but passable. But she says the wind got too strong and they were too exhausted to keep going with two miles to get out, so they took shelter. They called for help when the wind picked up and rain started pelting them.

There was a one-day strike by nurses and health care workers at 15 Sutter Health facilities. The staff were striking against health and safety protections after failed negotiations with higher-ups. The picketing workers say Sutter refused to discuss their proposals on safe staffing and health and safety protections. The California Nurses Association (CNA), an affiliate of National Nurses United says they had a nearly unanimous strike authorization vote last month. They gave the hospitals notice they would be striking. The union says they had over 8,000 registered nurses and workers participate, including nurses at Sutter Lakeside Hospital in Lakeport.

A family in Redwood Valley says they saw a mountain lion in their yard. On Easter Sunday the cougar was seen in their front yard, which Mendo Fever reports is past the railroad tracks. Their home surveillance system caught the animal around 1 am about 20-30 feet from their front door. The family has a bunch of farm animals and outdoor cats, so the mom of the house told the news site she is hoping the lion was not there scoping out the situation. They have 4-H pigs, goats and chickens. The news site reports a biologist with the Calif. Dept. of Fish and Wildlife for Mendocino County says the family may want to report the sighting to the agency.

The Mendocino County District Attorney is joining other prosecutors statewide to criticize the plan to permanently expand early release of some prisoners for good behavior. DA David Eyster is working with a group of conservatives to get a new state Attorney General elected who will toss the state prison plan so thousands of ‘violent offenders’ are not released. Republican-turned-Independent Sacramento County District Attorney Anne Marie Schubert is Eyster’s choice. She’s been the Sacramento County’s District Attorney since 2014. She’s also favored by other conservative DA’s, law enforcement groups, and victims’ rights organizations, who complain the state is too soft on crime.

A crash in Ukiah blocked North State Street for several hours. Around lunchtime yesterday the CHP reported the crash in the 1800 block of North State Street where at least one person had a minor to moderate injury. They had to extricate the woman out of the car, both vehicles, a white Toyota hybrid and a silver Honda, had major damage. One of the drivers was taken to the hospital. The road was cleared in about 3 and a half hours.

A slew of earthquakes reported along the North Coast. Mendo Fever reports the first hit fifteen miles south of Hopland Monday night. It was a 3.3, not that big, but big enough to wake some folks from their slumber. Other quakes shook near Cloverdale over the last day or two between 1.3-2.3 on the Richter scale. Mendo Fever reported there were seven measurable quakes near Cloverdale from Monday into Tuesday.

A public hearing has been set in Clearlake after the city planned millions of dollars worth of roadwork. The City Council’s holding the hearing tomorrow night at 6 in person and online. The Finance Director presented the city council with some options for Measure V road improvement financing so the city could quickly start the work. The city could get a loan with a bank which would allow millions in work all at once instead of a bunch of smaller projects using the $2.5 million in yearly Measure V sales tax revenue.

There are no more COVID19 protocols in place in Mendocino County. The Public Health Officer announced late yesterday he had rescinded local Isolation and Quarantine requirements for the general public. Anyone who thinks they’ve been exposed to the virus and has no symptoms is not required to isolate or quarantine, even if they’re not vaccinated, unless they live or work in a high-risk setting. Dr. Andy Coren says the change is after the state Department of Public Health did the same, ending quarantine recommendations for the public. They say you should still get tested for the virus 3-5 days after exposure and wear a mask around others for ten days, but you can work, go to school and do your regular activities, if you have no symptoms. If the test is positive and you do have symptoms, the quarantine rules do apply for 10 days until there is no fever or symptoms.

The woman who claimed she was abducted and branded by two other women in Northern Calif. has admitted in court she lied. Sherri Papini was in court yesterday in relation to her 2016 “kidnapping” from Redding. She pleaded guilty to making false statements to a federal agent and mail fraud. These are lesser crimes and part of a plea agreement. Her lawyer told the judge during their brief Zoom hearing that she was being treated by a psychiatrist for anxiety, depression and post-traumatic stress disorder. She faces 25 years in prison for lying to the FBI. She may also have to pay over $300,000 in restitution.

Rural residents who pump their own water in Sonoma County will have to start paying for the water. If folks are part of the Santa Rosa groundwater basin, they may have to start paying up to $25/year. In the Sonoma Valley basin, they would have to pay up to $80/year and in the Petaluma Valley basin, up to $200 a year. This would be for about a half-acre foot of well water per year. Those who use more than that, on ranches, or cities, water districts and businesses will pay more, based on the amount of water they draw from their wells. The Sonoma County Farm Bureau is speaking out on the new fees, saying their members cannot start to charge more for their products and say there hasn’t been enough public conversation on the matter.

A group of environmentalists and fishermen have filed a 60-day-notice against PG&E regarding the closure of the Potter Valley Project. The coalition says they intend to sue the energy giant under the Endangered Species Act. They say the fishway at the Cape Horn Dam in Potter Valley causes harm to endangered fish because they cannot pass if the facility is unpassable, or they are made vulnerable to predators when they try to climb the ladder. PG&E still owns the project and says they’re operating the Potter Valley Project in full compliance with the National Marine Fisheries Services’ (NMFS) Biological Opinion (BiOp). The 20-year license expired Thursday and the company has not applied for a renewal.

Nicole Glentzer has a new endorsement in her bid to be the next Mendocino County Superintendent of Schools. The California School Employees Association reports after reviewing both candidates professional histories and qualifications, they chose Glentzer, who was supported by all 8 Mendocino County chapters. They interviewed both candidates before announcing their decision. The Association says Nicole’s integrity and experience made her the clear choice for County Superintendent of Schools.

Deputies are investigating a reported home invasion assault in Kelseyville Riviera. It happened Sunday night on Edgewater Dr. where the victims reported a suspect forced his way inside and assaulted a woman and confronted her husband. But the husband got the upper hand and restrained the suspect and kicked him out of the house and he ran away. They described him as a white man with short hair, wearing a dark-colored hoodie. They also saw he had a tattoo on his upper chest. There’s not a lot more info than that. The Sheriff’s Office is reminding folks in the area to stay vigilant, lock their doors at night and be aware of strangers in the neighborhood. They also ask anyone in the area to review their cameras or video doorbells for footage of any suspicious person(s) and call the Sheriff’s office with any details.

Governor Newsom’s statewide Dump Day, is this Earth Day, April 23rd. So, with that Caltrans is offering a free used tire dumping event. It’s made possible with the Governor’s $1.1 billion-dollar Clean California initiative so that roads and waterways are kept free of litter, creates thousands of jobs and will bring multiple beautification projects to the state. The acting Caltrans director says the “best way to keep California clean is not to trash it in the first place”. He says the goal of the dump days is to make sure the trash doesn’t get into waterways or on roadsides to begin with. No construction materials, business waste, hazardous waste, e-waste, treated wood waste, or asbestos of any type will be accepted.

Ukiah Railroad Depot Lot – accepting TIRES ONLY – 237 E. Perkins, Entrance on East Clay Street off Main Street – 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. or until capacity is reached at the site.

C & S Waste Transfer Station – accepting TIRES, MATTRESSES, and FURNITURE ONLY – 230 Soda Bay Road, Lakeport – 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. or until capacity is reached at the site.

SLRR Recycling Center – accepting TIRES, MATTRESSES, and FURNITURE ONLY – 16015 Davis Street, Clearlake – 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. or until capacity is reached at the site.

Hybrid training sessions are being set up by the Mendocino County Office of Emergency Services for those who want to volunteer with the Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) if there are emergencies or natural disasters. You will learn disaster preparedness and survival skills, fire safety and suppression, some search and rescue, rescuer safety skills and how to assist in disaster medical operations. The sessions are coming up after the Board of Supervisors heard about the need a couple weeks ago. There’s online and in person sessions at the end of the month at the Caspar Community Center and in Ukiah.

Training sessions are set for 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. April 30 at 411 W. Clay Street in Ukiah, and from 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. May 21 at the Caspar Community Center, 15051 Caspar Road. For more information call 707-462-1959 or go to

The Lake County Board of Supervisors is getting an update on cleanup of the Sulphur Bank Mercury Mine Superfund site. At their regular meeting this morning, the board will hear from the US EPA Region 9 staff. The site’s project manager, and other staff members will show a presentation to the board on the recommended cleanup and public comment opportunities. The superfund site, which was added in 1990 to the list, is in Clearlake Oaks on the Clear Lake shoreline, next to the Elem Colony. There’s been some cleanup, but mercury is reportedly leaching into the Lake. The cleanup plan will be released to the public at some point this year.

The Behavioral Health and Recovery Services is planning their monthly meeting. It’s happening on Zoom a week from tomorrow from 10:00 AM – 12:30 PM; any interested community members are welcome to join. It’s meant for those who are interested in supporting the behavioral health services department. You’re encouraged to ask questions and seek answers to provide feedback. You can get a copy of the agenda on the agency’s website, or call for more info.

BHAB meeting agendas are published at:

(707) 472-2355 or e-mail: .

Celebrations in the mountains as a spring storm brought several feet of snow. The Central Sierra Snow Lab at UC Berkeley reported the seven-day snow total was over 3 feet in some mountain areas Saturday. Mammoth got a foot of snow and says they’re staying open for recreational snow sports until Memorial Day. Lake Tahoe also reported a bunch of the fluffy white stuff. And the Bay Area got pummeled by much needed rain. The National Weather Service reports it could slow fire season but won’t really do much for the severe drought. The Sierra Nevada snowpack was at only 30% at the April 1st measurement.

Even though the pandemic is surging again, thanks to the latest omicron variant, the Governor’s office has not announced any new protocols to beat back the virus again. Dr. Mark Ghaly, the state’s top health official says there’s been a slow, but noticeable increase in case rates. The secretary of the state Health and Human Services Agency says there’s no plans to follow in Philadelphia’s footsteps, reinstating the indoor mask mandate. Cases did spike over 50% in 10 days in Philly, but Dr. Ghaly says we haven’t seen that kind of case rate increase in Calif. yet. Case rates are up in most states right now. After spring break, we could see even more cases as the state is focused on encouraging folks to get vaccinated and boosted and wear a mask.

A celebration to bring in the 100th anniversary of the Little Lake Grange in Willits. It was first built as a school back in 1920 with construction wrapped up in 1922. It became the Little Lake Grange in 1938 and has been the backdrop for various organizations and businesses ever since. There are also many community events hosted there and its kitchen is rented out for anyone in need of a commercial kitchen. There was asbestos found under the building when some repairs needed to be made, so they’re hosting a fundraiser to repay a loan they had to take out. So the 100-year celebration tabled due to the pandemic is being planned, but in the meantime there’s a account to raise $200,000.

Police in Ukiah are going to present their 2021 annual report to the City Council. The dept. says it was a challenging year once again due to Covid-19 related illnesses, quarantines and other restrictions, testing and vaccinations. Some of the expenditures included replacing body-worn cameras and in-car mobile data terminals. They struggled through some staffing shortages, and the Chief retired. There was an increase in calls last year. The agency reports 24,355 calls for service, about a 14-percent increase from 2020. The most common were thefts, then aggravated assault, burglaries, robberies, and there were 12 reports of rape. The City Council meeting is Wednesday, April 20 at 6pm in person and on Zoom.

Two more people have died due to the pandemic. The county’s website posted the deaths Thursday, but didn’t give much more detail, except they were confirmed deaths, for a total now in the county of 122. The county has had over 13,100 cases as of last week, with the weekly average up slightly to 4.4 new cases per day over a seven-day period. The Public Health Office says the latest wave of the omicron strain is waning. At the same time, the office reported a new oral treatment available within 5 days of becoming ill with the virus. You have to have a prescription from a doctor for the new meds which are reported to curb serious illness, hospitalization, or death, and mostly important for those at elevated risk of severe Covid-19.

A bill in the state Assembly could mean community college and CSU student ID cards would include mental health hotlines on them. There are suicide prevention numbers on ID cards. That was required three years ago. And now some students support adding a 24-hour mental health hotline. The bill was introduced last month to require the number on the ID cards for local mental health services, either through the city, county or each college. But it can be optional for the University of California because the Legislature doesn’t have authority over UC.

Lake County’s Water Resources and Public Health Department considering private drinking water systems in Clearlake during the drought. Last week the two parties held a seminar on the topic with the coordinator of the Water Resources Invasive Species Program hosting. They talked about contaminants that can be identified in drinking water, like algal blooms. Apparently just over a decade ago residents started to notice their drinking water smelling funny. So as the level of Clear Lake goes down due to the drought, and the temperature goes up, there will possibly be more blooms. The webinar focused on what to do about that possibility, how it might harm humans and animals and where to report the illness if you or your pet ingests affected water.

To report blooms and human and animal illnesses, visit Remember to avoid contact with blooms and do not swim in areas with warning or danger signs. Control runoff of soils and fertilizers and manage septic tanks.

Two men busted for stealing a large amount of copper wiring from the Willits Redwood Company ordered to pay the company back. One of them was ordered to pay over $18,000 dollars, but not the other man. Logan Sperling of Belmont, one of the pair arrested for felony-level copper theft hired a lawyer to get his record expunged for supposedly paying the fines. He has submitted a document that he paid the restitution in full, but he never paid any of it in reality. So now Sperling owes nearly $34,000 with interest. So the Mendo DA has filed perjury charges against Sperling. He pleaded guilty Friday to avoid a trial. He’s due back in court in June for sentencing.

After a routine patrol by Mendocino County Deputies, a man they recognized from previous contacts was seen and arrested. But Orlando Munoz ran first. The man was wanted for a Post Release Community Supervision (PRCS) pick up order and was on probation. He’s now charged with Felony Violation County Parole, Felony Violation of Probation and Misdemeanor Resisting Obstructing Peace Officer. He’s held without bail.

A man from Ukiah’s been arrested after a routine traffic stop for a light violation. Glenn Jenkins
was on active Post Release Community Supervision (PRCS) with terms including “Do No Possess Dangerous Weapons Including Knives” and a “Fourth Amendment Waiver” so they could search him. They did and found a knife. He’s arrested and held on no bail.

A woman in Redwood Valley’s busted after being spotted exiting a liquor store with a paper bag. The deputies say they thought she looked familiar and knew she was on active felony probation with terms to include a “no alcohol” term. So she was contacted, found to be in possession of booze and arrested for violating her probation. She’s held without bail.

A Ukiah man has been arrested on a slew of charges after being seen in a stolen pickup. Police say Shane Miller had an arrest warrant as did Emily Christopher, who was with him. The truck was seen in the Orchard Shopping Center, so they stopped the duo and found three people with meth packaged for sale and oxycodone tablets. Miller was found to be in possession of a fixed blade knife and meth. Cops say he had picked up the other two in the stolen vehicle. Emily Christopher was with them and had a misdemeanor warrant for her arrest and was in possession of nearly 2 ounces of meth. And Scott Stone was in possession of a smaller amount of meth he said was for personal use that he got from Miller. The trio were arrested on various charges including drug and weapons possession and possession of a stolen vehicle.

A bill to require California schools to make all their salary information public goes to the state Senate appropriations committee. Right now only about a quarter of school districts comply with a request from the State Controller to turn over data on how much employees make, from the superintendent to principals, teachers and custodians. So Senate Bill 924, co-authored by state Senator Steven Glazer, would require school districts to comply.

 :14  "These things only come out with transparency, with disclosure. I'm less interested in what we pay every school teacher because I think it's all too low; more interested in some of the excessive salaries that some school districts are paying their chief administrators."

Tag: The state would then make the database publicly available on the web. Some school districts complain that the requirement would be onerous, especially since they already are sending data on salary ranges to the state Department of Education.

Second Cut: Glazer notes that other local entities, such as special districts, counties and cities already are required to send in their payroll data.

 :18  "Well, the legislation that created this transparency portal for salaries was done in 2014. It was the broad view of the Legislature and the governor that there should be no exceptions. The loophole that the schools are using to avoid that disclosure is not right. And my legislation seeks to correct it. "

Tag: Glazer is one of six candidates running for the office of state controller in the fall.

The Mendocino County Office of Education (MCOE) announces changes as schools and students have evolving needs. The Superintendent put out a statement about the office. They serve nearly 200 employees at 12 public school districts who serve over 112,000 students and 15 charter schools with 1,500 more students. The superintendent says they’ve come up with a new strategic plan which will serve as a guidepost for the future. So there will now be four main divisions: The Office of the County Superintendent, Business Services, Administrative Services, and Educational Services. Superintendent’s office will be responsible for total oversight; Educational Services to support school districts, including many of the most vulnerable students; Business Services will provide fiscal support and oversight for school districts; and finally the Administrative Services Division will be charged with human resource functions, emergency preparedness and technology support.

The state Department of Fish and Wildlife has announced in person hunter safety training is back. The hunter education course is required for anyone looking to get out in the wilderness with a hunting license. The agency has only carried out online training since the pandemic hit. They will still offer the virtual study option as well. In person has hands-on training, including the safe handling of firearms, loading and unloading, storage, and more. They will pick up the traditional course, same as before the pandemic; a hybrid option, which is partly online and partly in person; and an online-only certification course which was put together when the pandemic first surfaced.

Prospective hunters may go to for more information on how to sign up for a course.