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The Lake County Grand Jury is out with their report on the Office of Emergency Services. In one notable section, the Jury says community involvement in the Disaster Council could be better, but blames it on a county supervisor, who the Jury says is not engaging the public enough, nor are there enough formal recommendations to the Board of Supervisors. The Grand Jury poured over reams of documents including the County Emergency Operations Plan, the Sheriff’s Office Policy and Procedures as well as the county’s yearly budget. They say they also interviewed the Sheriff/Coroner, staffers at that agency and visited the Emergency Operations Center. The Jury concluded the Disaster Council should be reorganized and get more community organizations involved, like the Fire Safe Councils, Firewise communities and the Clear Lake Environmental Research Center.

Scary report released on California’s drinking water. The audit was released Tuesday with the Acting State Auditor calling out regulators at the State Water Resources Control Board. The audit’s accompanying report said there was a general “lack of urgency” for “failing water systems”, but noted the state was still shelling out hundreds of millions of dollars for some drinking water projects. Some of the frightening statistics including over 900,000 people in the state at an increased risk of cancer and liver and kidney problems due to where they get their drinking water, over 150 water systems failed to meet standards for at least five years, and another 430 or so were at risk of failing. Many service low-income, disadvantaged communities. The auditor recommending fast tracking applications and limiting unnecessary documents to get there.

The new Mendocino County CEO says her team has working on requests from various entities for budget data. The Executive Office Fiscal Team has been queried on the county’s financial position related to salary and benefits. But CEO Darcie Antle says putting out reports in a timely matter has been a challenge due to the county’s accounting system, Munis. She says a lot of the reports that have been produced, were put together after a compilation from various sources. She also says their goal is to be fully transparent. For anyone interested in reading over the material it can be found on the county’s website:

https://www.mendocinocounty.org/government/human-resources/labor-relations.

A man in Willits has been arrested on a myriad of charges after reports he shot off a gun negligently, then tried to disarm a Deputy. The Sheriff’s Office reports getting a call Tuesday and found Trevor Williams unsafely discharged the firearm several times near a child, potentially endangering her life. They also found he had a restraining order against him and was not allowed to have weapons. They say he was verbally hostile and had armed himself with multiple firearms. They evacuated the area and called for backup. Apparently the guy asked for Sheriff Matt Kendall to come to the scene, but then he took off on an ATV. As the Sheriff arrived, they say Williams threatened law enforcement, but surrendered eventually. He was taken down after first tackling a couple of Deputies.

A bunch of money to be distributed in Lake County for a COVID emergency shelter. Lake County Continuum of Care and the Behavioral Health Services Dept. say they’ve received $300,000 from the Housing, Homeless, Assistance, and Prevention Rounds 2 and 3 program for the emergency shelter in the North Shore area. Those who are unsheltered including minors will be taken care there. They have a Q&A session over Zoom set up to learn more for applicants who are interested. Request for proposal guidelines HERE:

https://www.lakecoc.org/upcoming-funding-opportunities

The deadline for applications is August 17, 2022, BY 11:59 P.M

August 3, 2022, at 3:00 P.M. via Zoom: https://us06web.zoom.us/j/89538409328

A state of emergency has been declared by the mayor of San Francisco due to an increase in monkeypox cases. Mayor London Breed says the city’s in a scary place and this will cut through the red tape to get funds to help them with the public health crisis. The Mayor also says leaders in the LGBTQ+ community have asked for help in recent weeks and says the city’s in “desperate need of vaccines”. The emergency declaration takes effect Monday as the city nears 300 cases of the virus. There are also about 800 cases in the state, and 4,600 nationwide, and a shortage of the vaccine.

Like the wine industry before it, now comes cannabis tourism. Recreational sales are expected to rake in $37 billion dollars in 2024. The Emerald Triangle is expected to reap the benefits. So, Visit Mendocino County is preparing. Along with Trinity and Humboldt counties, the area is believed to be the largest cannabis-producing region in the United States, with cannabis being Mendocino County’s biggest agriculture gold mine. The Executive Director of Visit Mendocino County says tourists are looking to escape to the redwoods, go on tours, lounge in the village or Mendocino. Various other towns are ready to service visitors too, including Hopland, Philo, rural Ukiah, Laytonville and Willits.

One of the managers working on the drought at the State Water Resources Control Board is out, decrying the Governor’s handling of the crisis. Max Gomberg had been at the helm and recommending various strategies to take to help the parched state. The board’s climate and conservation manager says he doesn’t think Gov. Newsom and his administration will go after the radical changes necessary during these dried up times. His resignation letter was posted online earlier this month. In it, he accuses Newsom of sticking to the status quo and blames others at the board for not strongly pushing back, calling it all, “gut wrenching”. Some of his ideas included helping low-income ratepayers, bolstering water conservation, changing water agency permit requirements for climate preparedness, and adding climate requirements to strengthen water regulation and management. A spokesperson for the Governor’s office says Newsom is doing more than most anyone related to climate change.

PG&E sees sinking profits and more wildfire costs. But the latest report says during the second quarter of this year they made a ton of progress to slow destructive wildfires. The company reported earnings of $356 million, down just over 10% from a year before. The total revenue was down almost 2% from the year before. Meanwhile, the utility is trying to get the Public Utilities Commission to allow them to raise rates on customers so they can continue burying power lines. That could mean another $30/mo for the average customer. This comes after a rate increase the first quarter of this year, topping 16% more.

Lawmakers say they’re working on ways to help parents help their children curb their social media additions. Lawmakers say it’s a matter of mental health for kids. They’re looking at ways to tame the way companies target websites, luring kids (and adults) back to them. They also want to find ways to slow the push notifications and auto play functions. A pair of bills are being considered to require websites, social media, or other online platforms to dump certain features, saying that can pull kids in, creating an addiction and collect their personal information, and promote harmful content. One of the bills would attach penalties to it, of up to $7,500 per affected child. But some decry the bills are a violation of free speech.

A couple of massive air tankers for the CAL FIRE Sonoma-Lake-Napa Unit (LNU). The two Type-1 Helitankers arrived at the beginning of the month for aerial firefighting in the Sonoma Lake Napa Unit. One will be based at the Napa County Airport, and the other at the Sonoma Air Attack base at the Sonoma County Airport. There’s also already a Type-1 CAL FIRE HAWK “Copter 104” in Lake County, for a total of three massive helicopters. They’ll all be available to fight fires in the greater Bay Area and all of California.

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