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An arrest has been made in Ukiah after a call to Lovers Lane. The Sheriff’s office says there were reports of a burglary Sunday morning and when they got there, an employee said a bunch of stuff was missing. Security footage from overnight showed a man at the back door of the business when they were closed. On the video, they saw him enter, take several items, and leave. Store employees apparently knew him, identifying him as Lorenzo Cruz, a local homeless guy. The man was found, and Deputies say he matched the description of the man on video. He also had some of the stolen items with him, so he was booked into jail and held on $15,000.00 bail.

The Governor has backed away from a proposal to squeeze oil companies who make a bunch of money. Yesterday, Newsom’s office said they had an amended bill coming to create a watchdog agency as part of the California Energy Commission who would look into possible price gouging by the oil industry. It would also give permission to the commission to set up where and when profits would be penalized. The Governor’s chief of staff says the changes being made come after several months of consulting with lawmakers who said penalties should be determined by industry experts.

Plans have been approved for more housing for University of Calif. students. The board of regents gave the greenlight to some residential projects to add almost 8,000 beds across five campuses. It’s not going to happen fast though, and one UC official said it may be a bit optimistic because of the obstacles in just getting housing built, sometimes including lawsuits which try to stop projects. Just the same the regents’ finance committee approved over 3,000 beds at UC Santa Cruz and more than 2,400 at UC San Diego. Projects were also approved at UCLA, UC Irvine and UC Riverside.

Since the state has ended most public health orders related to COVID-19, Mendocino County has changed its orders too. A day after Lake County did the same. But Mendo is following the state with recommendations, no longer mandates. As of this past Monday anyone with a close contact with no symptoms should get tested if they’re exposed, within one day. If they test positive, they should isolate, but if it’s within 30 days of a prior infection, no test is necessary, unless you’re a healthcare worker. Isolation is for five days. Vaccines and boosters are not required but are recommended. Same for masks. There are no new orders for schools except to follow Cal-OSHA regulations. And you don’t have to report results of home tests, but should call a doctor if you get seriously ill to protect others.

The Mendocino County BOS find at their mid-year budget review there was a multi-million-dollar reporting error. Apparently, the Mendocino Cannabis Department not only erred on their calculations, but also projected being over-budget by over $660,000. There are five county departments over budget in the mid-year report. After the Cannabis Dept., it’s the Sheriff’s Dept. The projected overage there was just over a half million dollars. Animal care, facilities, and the Executive Office all followed. The report which covers July-September of 2022 had county sales revenue off over 5%. The Cannabis Dept. overage could have something to do with a $3.2 million reporting error in the state report on grant funding. Something the county found out about this week.

Fort Bragg police are looking for a woman they say was involved in a hit and run Tuesday. The City has put a picture up of the woman the police dept. says was suspected of being connected to the crash 100 Block of Hazel Street [Tuesday] morning. They ask anyone who may have seen something to call their non-emergency line at (707) 964-0200.

After reports of an assault at the Walmart in Clearlake, cops put out the word they were trying to find a resident of Cobb. Police say they had a report Sunday of a man-on-man assault outside the garden dept. One man hit with a hammer ended up in the hospital. Cops say Peter Guerrero surrendered in relation to the altercation. They say the victim was walking into the Walmart and was attacked from behind. It then came out the two were related, the suspect had hammered his dad, and had admitted he wanted to kill him. So, he’s charged with attempted homicide.

There’ a new county counsel and interim director of Behavioral Health Services in Lake County. After a closed door Board of Supervisors meeting, the board unanimously agreed to appoint Senior Deputy Counsel Lloyd Guintivano to take over for County Counsel Anita Grant whose last day is one week from tomorrow. She had apparently told the board about a year ago she was planning to retire. The county was recruiting for the position, and Guintivano and another deputy county counsel, Carlos Torrez, were filling in for Grant at meetings. Guintivano has been with the county almost 15 years. During the same closed session meeting the board chose Assistant County Administrative Officer Stephen Carter as interim Behavioral Health Services director. The previous director, Todd Metcalf was with the county 11 years. He’s moving to Hawaii to retire.

The giant crack that turned into something of a sinkhole on Highway 101 at the Humboldt County/Mendocino County line is getting a permanent fix. State Senator Mike McGuire says the “corridor is slumping into the river”. Caltrans says the one-way traffic there will continue for the “foreseeable future”, and to expect 15-to-30-minute delays. The recent weather conditions have added onto an already sketchy stretch of highway because of its proximity to the South Fork Eel River near Milkyway Loop Road. Caltrans is considering many solutions, but all require dry weather. Senator McGuire says $20 million has been set aside for the project.

The mayor of Fort Bragg says he’s running for a seat on the Mendocino County Board of Supervisors. Mayor Bernie Norvell announced his candidacy for the 4th District Supervisor seat in 2024. He says it comes after a lot of careful thought on the matter, and consultations with community members and current supervisors. Norvell has been the mayor the last two years and a city council member since 2016. He says all of his accomplishments as the mayor will be brought with him if he’s elected supervisor. He says he believes he will be able to create an even greater impact on the board as the county faces budget issues, an increasing cost for the jail expansion, cannabis production and programs, housing needs and water resiliency.

Even though we started with a pretty normal to above-normal water year, the spillway at the Scott Dam at Lake Pillsbury is not closing this spring. PG&E had previously closed the gates around early spring so that lake levels can increase and store additional water from the spring runoff for later in the dryer months. So more water can flow into the Eel River, but less for Lake Pillsbury in the summer and fall. PG&E reported this was the plan out of an abundance of caution and for community safety to reduce the possibility of risk related to seismic performance. The Vice President of Power Generation for the utility company says the risks to the dam are very low, but storing less water in the reservoir lowers the water load on the dam, and any risk after a seismic event.

The National Marine Fisheries Service is being called out for not coming up with a plan to protect humpback whales from commercial sablefish fishermen on the West Coast. The fisheries service has to have a plan to reduce how many whales are hurt or killed by the fishery, per the Endangered Species Act. A judge ruled the Fisheries Service broke the law because they never had a plan. They also admit they kill at least one humpback whale a year. The Center for Biological Diversity sued the Fisheries Service related to the issue last year.

The Mandala Springs wellness retreat center announces they’re working with indigenous community members and a community redevelopment group to restore Kelsey Creek. The former Glenbrook Resort is located on the creek in the Cobb Watershed. They are working with the Big Valley Band of Pomo Indians, the Tribal Eco Restoration Alliance (TERA), Flow West, and others to bring the area back to its natural state. They’re also looking at wildlife habitat, water quality, and reintroducing native plants that were previously a part of daily life for the Pomo population locally.

Flood water is being monitored in Lake County by the Health Services Department around the Lake and other flood-prone/low-lying areas because of all the rain we’ve been getting. More rain is coming tomorrow (Friday) and the agency is worried about possible flood conditions around the lake. So as a way to prevent potential sewage contamination, community members around these areas are being asked to reduce their drain flows and use strict water conservation measures so they can be sure their drains are not backing up. Contaminated sewage can of course, spread disease.

The city of Ukiah is looking to add community members to openings on their Diversity and Equity Committee. Those qualified, looking to help make a difference in the community, who are interested in serving, are encouraged to apply. The city says those involved help improve diversity and equity in the City’s workforce… by helping to put together the city’s Equity Action Plan, provide an annual review and update to the City Council on their progress, propose revisions to the plan, as needed and engage with underrepresented groups in the community.

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