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PG&E reports undergrounding equipment in many fire prone areas, including several projects in Lake County. The hardening work in the county is for about 15 miles of overhead distribution powerlines and 21 miles in high fire-threat areas to try to curb this year’s wildfire risk. The regional VP of the North Coast Region says they’re trying to evolve with California’s changing weather conditions, working year-round. Besides undergrounding work, he says they’re also installing stronger power poles with covered conductor. He says the undergrounding will reduce ignition risk by 99 percent on undergrounded circuits and save the energy company money on temporary repairs and recurring costs like vegetation management. They may also be able to cut back the amount of public safety power shutoffs too. The company’s been planning to bury 10,000 miles of distribution powerlines across the state.

A community workshop on the housing crisis is planned in Point Arena. Tonight at 6pm the city’s hosting a Zoom meeting to update residents and other stakeholders in its Local Coastal Program which they say will make it easier for developers to put up housing in Point Arena. The city’s housing team will be on hand. Those leading the meeting will talk about potential changes to the housing plan, talk timelines and allow time for comments, suggestions and ideas.

A free Large Item Dump Day is being held by Caltrans, the County of Mendocino, and Solid Waste of Willits in Gualala. It’s part of the governor’s $1.1 billion Clean California initiative. It pays for the event, and other similar campaigns to rid litter from public spaces across the state. Residents are being encouraged to dump unwanted, bulky items. This Saturday from 10 am to 2 pm, at the South Coast Transfer Station. They’re limiting items to furniture, appliances, tires (only 9 per load), and other large, bulky household items. They’re not accepting construction materials, business waste, e-waste, mattresses, hazardous waste, treated wood waste, or asbestos. Dump Days are also planned in Del Norte, Humboldt, Lake, and Mendocino Counties.

The Governor is putting money into Mental Health wellness work, saying the entire country is dealing with a crisis. He announced nearly $519 million dollars in grants for services and housing options for people with severe mental illness or substance abuse problems, including the unsheltered. It’s part of Governor Newsom’s CARE Court proposal, to deal with the homelessness crisis with a different approach to get people off the streets and cared for. There will be treatment beds for over 1,000 people at a time, and behavioral health services for others. The grants were announced during a meeting Newsom hosted with families of those who have a loved one in crisis, many that are homeless. As part of the campaign, Mendocino County is receiving just over $7,700,000.

The latest election results in Mendocino County have been released by the Mendocino County Assessor-County Clerk-Recorder’s office. There have been 9,776 ballots tallied since the election 2 weeks ago and the office reports they have around “roughly 11,500” ballots left to count. Of the major measures and campaigns locally three of them are pretty much the same. For the 5th District Supervisor and Chair Ted Williams, 3rd District Supervisor John Haschak, and Mendocino County Sheriff Matt Kendall. All of them were in major landslides. But in another race, a surprise winner emerges, the County Superintendent of Schools. The incumbent Michelle Hutchins looks to be out with challenger Nicole Glentzer ahead with about 10% of the vote. The Sheriff had a last-minute write-in opponent in a former Deputy, Trent James. He only grabbed about 11% of the vote. Incumbent Matt Kendall leads with 89% of the votes. The election will be certified in a couple weeks.

In Lake County, the Registrar of Voters Office reports they plan to certify the election results by July 7th, a month after the Primary. As a reminder all vote-by-mail voters who got a a “Signature Verification Statement” or an “Unsigned Ballot Envelope Statement”, the deadline for the Registrar of Voters office to receive the completed forms either by US Postal Service, fax, email, or in person is Tuesday July 5th as well. The office will not count any vote-by-mail ballot if the completed and signed Statement is not returned by then.

Cal Fire is reminding all that fireworks are illegal in Mendocino County. They say nearly half of all Independence Day fires are caused by fireworks, more than any other cause. And they say kids are at the greatest risk. The Cal Fire Unit Chief Luke Kendall is reminding folks in the county to do their part and help prevent wildfires and injuries caused by fireworks, especially when we are in a severe drought and current dry conditions make the risk extremely high. The state also has a zero tolerance for the use and sale of illegal fireworks. Cal Fire is working with law enforcement and firefighting agencies to take illegal fireworks away and prosecute anyone found to be in possession of them.

The Citizens’ Committee for the Library Initiative have reportedly submitted signatures on petitions for a renewal of Measure A. That’s for a one-eighth of a cent sales tax. They’re also requesting the sales tax from Measure B be extended for 40 percent for building improvements. The Friends of the Library have been trying to get folks to sign their petitions so the Measure appears on the November ballot. The committee was formed specifically to get Measure A passed to provide a permanent funding mechanism for the Library and Bookmobile.

PG&E is reminding folks to sign up for their Family Electric Rate Assistance Program. The company says thousands of income-eligible customers live in Lake, Mendocino and Humboldt counties, and that they could save as much as 18% on their monthly electric bill by enrolling. The program allows for discounts on electricity bills for households with three or more people who are income eligible but have yet to sign up. PG&E says there are as many as 3,199 households in the three counties who may be eligible and less than 25% of eligible PG&E households are enrolled in Northern and Central California.

The pandemic does not seem to be the reason this particularly popular Lake County event is canceled. The Lake County Chamber of Commerce sent out an email last week they were no longer sponsoring the Clear Lake Seaplane Splash In, so it’s canceled. It had been planned for June 24th to 26th, this weekend. It would have been the first time since the pandemic started the event would be held, and the 40th Splash In. But the Splash In Facebook page said it looked as though the Chamber would not be the lead organization in future years, but there were a group of folks interested in carrying the event in future years.  Lake Co News reports organizers were reaching out to potential future participants for a 2023 revival of the event.

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