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Category Archives: 94.5 K-Wine News

94.5 K-Wine Local News Reports

The sales tax goes up this Saturday in Ukiah. The half-cent sales tax increase, which takes effect April 1, was approved by voters last November as Measure Y for the city to raise money for road repair and maintenance. The new sales tax rate will be 8.375 percent. But the city can’t spend the money yet. The Ukiah Daily Journal reports a lawsuit brought by the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association is still pending that challenges whether the measure should have needed a super-majority to pass rather than a simple majority. They claim the way it was presented on the ballot made it a special tax rather than a general tax. The city says the revenue collected starting Saturday will be placed into an escrow account until the lawsuit runs its course.

A Ukiah woman is facing a Felony Domestic Violence Battery charge. On Sunday night Mendocino County Sheriff’s Deputies were dispatched to a home on North State Street where the victim said he’d just been driving with the suspect, Deanna Lynn Madrid, as a passenger on Highway 20 from Fort Bragg to Willits when they got into a fight and she allegedly punched him in the face while he was behind the wheel. When they got home he went somewhere else and called police. She was being held in the jail in lieu of $25,000 bail.

Madelene Lyon of Kelseyville has been named this year’s Woman of the Year in Lake County. Congressman Mike Thompson presented the honor at the third annual Woman of the Year Awards last Saturday. Thompson created the award for Women’s History Month and each year, chooses one woman from each county in his District. Lake County News reports Thompson’s staff called for nominations last month from the community and Lyon was selected for her long resume of community work including with the Kelseyville Food Pantry, Redbud Audubon Society, Hospice Services of Lake County, March of Dimes Lake County, the Lake County Board of Education and the Clear Lake State Park Interpretive Association. She also grows wine grapes on a 50-acre farm.

A demand for a ride home brings a new taxi service to Willits. A flyer posted on Facebook shows Redwood Taxi Service, which has also used the name Hey Taxi in Ukiah, is now in Willits. The flyer says they’re operating 24/7 for about $8 for an average fare to downtown, Brooktrails and East Valley. They will also travel outside city limits.

A couple of North Coast lawmakers are appointed to head the Senate Select Committee for the Wine Industry. Senator Mike McGuire of Healdsburg and Senator Bill Dodd of Napa will co-chair the committee that includes lawmakers of both parties to will oversee issues of concern to California’s wine industry. Apparently 90 percent of all wine produced in the United States comes from California which has a yearly economic impact of over $57 billion for Calif. plus it creates 325,000 jobs.

Cleanup after the Valley Fire is still happening at Hoberg’s. The resort was burned to the ground during the Sept. 2015 fire. The Record Bee reports the Hoberg’s Historical Association agreed to a Gate Fee Charge Account with the county for the debris and waste that needed to be taken from the property in Cobb. The agreement with the Eastlake Sanitary landfill (ESL) for about 5,000 tons of waste left after the fire. About a fifth of that has been taken out. Apparently there’s still quite a bit of wood waste and tree debris along with building debris removal still happening. There had been asbestos in some of the burned buildings too.

A school bus from the Ukiah Unified School District has been in a crash. The bus accident Monday afternoon as the school bus was at a complete stop Tomki Road at Fisher Lake Road. Police say the driver Franklin Elder was stopped when James Gowan of Redwood Valley, pulled behind. Police say the bus started to back up and Gowan went around the bus and the two vehicles crashed. They then stopped, blocking one lane. The CHP says neither the two drivers or the students were injured.

Fast chargers coming to the North Coast into the Oregon border for electric vehicles. Grants from the California Energy Commission are paying for the new charging sites off Highway 101. A partnership between ChargePoint and the Mendocino Council of Governments and the Redwood Coast Energy Authority makes the chargers a reality. ChargePoint will put in chargers at six locations in Humboldt and Del Norte counties, three in Mendocino County and two in northern Sonoma County. The longest distance between chargers would be 57 miles.

Lake County staff working on the new public defender partnership. The Board of Supervisors changed the company staff had recommended though. Instead of working with Ahart out of Shasta County, as we reported, staff will start negotiating instead with Lake Indigent Defense. Ahart had the lowest bid at $1.3 million, $20,000 less than Lake Indigent. Lake Indigent is also offering twice as many attorneys to work for the County. There was another bid of more than $1.4 million which was turned down. The last day of the contract for the last public defender service provider is May 6th.

Senators Mike McGuire and Scott Wiener’s Presidential Tax Transparency & Accountability Act has been approved…

The bill means a Presidential candidate must share basic tax information with the public. It also requires they put up the last five years of their returns so they can even be put on the California ballot. McGuire says transparency is a nonpartisan issue.

A man in Forestville accused of the murder of his younger brother has been formally charged. Shaun Gallon in court yesterday, arraigned on murder and weapons charges for the murder of bother Shamus. Their mother, apparently there at the time of the shooting, but in another room of her home, called it in. Police say the elder Gallon had done time for shooting an arrow at two men and a list of other crimes too. He was arrested after the automatic rifle shooting death of his brother last weekend. He’s charged with the murder and being a felon in possession of a firearm.

The Fort Bragg Grange or Guild is closed. Apparently members of the guild showed up Monday night to find the locks on the building changed and the doors bolted closed from inside. Some broke in saying the property was theirs, but the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office sent deputies out. No arrests happened and the ownership may have to be hashed out in court. The larger organization across the country, The National Grange lobbies for agricultural interests and rural families. The guild was a spin off or breakaway of the National group.

The Oakland Raiders are moving to Vegas and the owner of the team says he’s got another business venture up his sleeve. Dennis Hof says he’s planning a Raiders themed brothel. As you may know, brothels are legal in many parts of Nevada. Hof apparently already owns six there. The new venture to be called Pirate’s Booty, with a grand opening set in 2020. That’s about the same time the Raiders move to Vegas and into their new stadium.

A busy first day on the job for Ukiah Valley Fire Authority’s New Chief. Jeff Adair and his crew were called to a fire at a house on North State Street around 10pm Monday night. Adair says the building was fully involved and spreading when they arrived. The fire was contained with help from Redwood Valley Fire and CalFire but not before damaging a nearby barn and a neighboring house. Chief Adair tells the Daily Journal they determined it was an accidental electrical fire but they are continuing to investigate. The house was used to grow marijuana. It’s not yet clear whether anyone lives on the property but no one was there when the fire started.

The clock is ticking on the California DMV’s traffic ticket amnesty program. Signed into law in 2015 by Governor Jerry Brown, the program allows those with unpaid traffic or non-traffic infractions, to have fines potentially reduced by up to 80 percent. Legislators came up with the amnesty plan to try to recoup as must past debt as possible. It does not cover parking tickets, reckless driving, or DUI. And some courts will actually collect an amnesty program fee. To see if you are eligible check the state DMV Website. The amnesty program expires Monday April 3.

Ukiah Natural Foods Co-op is giving out thousands in grants to local nonprofits. The Daily Journal reports, as part of the mission of supporting local farmers and increasing access to healthy food the Co-op is giving out more than $24,300 out of profit so the nonprofits can help improve nutrition in some way for county residents with education, agricultural investment or to help the needy. Every year the Co-op donates to nonprofits. This year those benefitting include a couple of homeless shelters, the Ukiah Unified School District, the Kiwanis Club and the Anderson Valley Senior Center among others.

Final approval is set for the Mendocino County Medical Cannabis Cultivation Regulation. The county’s Department of Agriculture is trying to hire people to help with the new program. They still have two openings for biologists for the cultivation permitting program after six months of trying to find people. Apparently finding housing is the holdup there. Once the ordinance gets final approval it should take effect in May. The Dept. says it’s struggling to fill key positions due to a low level of interest and the housing problem in Ukiah.

More info released on the murder of a man in Forestville. The Sonoma County Sheriff’s Dept. arrested Shaun Gallon, the victim, Shamus Gallon’s older brother, after a call by their mom that one was armed and the other shot. The Sheriff’s Dept. says Shaun shot at Shamus during a confrontation, but there had been no obvious conflict leading up to the shooting. They say the mom was home at the time but not in the same room with the men. She called for help as one son lay shot and the other took off, armed with a rifle. The elder brother was arrested in Guerneville, as we reported. Cops say they also found an AR‑15-style rifle with him. He’s in the Sonoma County Jail, with no bail. Deputies say Shaun had a long criminal history dating back to 2003.

An old empty rail car has been burned by fire near the Willits train depot. A security company that monitors the train tracks reported the fire over the weekend. Apparently the owner of the security company was patrolling the tracks, and he saw smoke near the depot. Firefighters were on the scene, but the rail car was gutted. The Press Democrat reports a Skunk Train employee told police she saw a group of boys who looked about high school age near the former Amtrak train Sunday morning, then she heard a loud bang.

Several fire code violations found in a building in Oakland that burned and killed three people. Apparently the building had just been inspected Friday and officials found three infractions, one, no fire extinguishers. There were also no smoke detectors in apartments or a working fire sprinkler system. This according to documents the city of Oakland released. Fire inspectors had ordered the owner to immediately take care of the violations. Then Monday, the fire broke out, three lower income residents died there. The building apparently shelter to about 80 recovering drug addicts and former homeless people. Four other people were injured.

A small dip in unemployment for Lake County. Lake Co News reports there was also strong job growth in some categories last month. The California Employment Development Department’s latest report shows Lake’s unemployment rate for February at 6.6%, a significant jump after 7.3 percent in January and a point lower than a year ago. The news site reports based on old data from the Employment Development Department, the unemployment rate was the lowest for February in more than a quarter century. San Mateo County had the lowest unemployment rate in the state again. And Colusa County was last on the list with a rate of 22.8 percent.

Clearlake is going to start dumping abandoned vehicles. It’s been an issue for some time and the Acting Police Chief says their officers and Code Enforcement officers are tagging then towing vehicles they believe to be abandoned. Their removal costs money which is made possible thru the state from DMV car registration fees. The Abandoned Vehicle Authority is part of the Lake County Board of Supervisors and city council members from the cities of Clearlake and Lakeport. The issue finally gets heat after fees from the state come in after a misinterpretation of the law regarding abandoned vehicle fees.

A community town hall is set with Congressman Mike Thompson in Kelseyville. The town hall this Saturday, April 1st, from 1 to 2:30 p.m. at Kelseyville High School’s Tom Aiken Student Center on Main St. Anyone with questions for the Congressman or if those who want to hear about the happenings in D-C, are invited. Thompson to cover a variety of issues which may include health care, national security and tax reform. Thompson will also host his annual ravioli dinner later in the day… for those interested in the town hall, call Thompson’s office or visit his website to RSVP.

Low interest federal disaster loans now available after the winter storms but, due to drought. The loans for small nonfarm businesses in 26 California counties. The Small Business Administration loans approved after the approval of a disaster declaration last week. The SBA’s Disaster Field Operations Center Director says the loans are meant to offset economic loss due to reduced revenue caused by the drought in counties including Colusa, Contra Costa, Lake, Mendocino, Sacramento, and Yolo. This is for those who’ve suffered agricultural production losses due to the disaster or those directly impacted by the drought. The deadline to apply is Nov. 22nd.

Richard Bean has been sworn in as the newest member of the Clearlake Planning Commission. Lake County News reports the retired pastor and former auditor-secretary of the Clearlake Oaks County Water District was sworn in last week and went right to work on his first night with two public hearings on marijuana, both related to amending the existing marijuana cultivation ordinance and existing marijuana dispensary ordinance comply with Proposition 64. As we reported last week both ordinances were reviewed and the planning commission voted 5-0 to recommend that the city council approve them with some minor adjustments.

Detectives say a Forestville man accused of killing his brother Friday shot him multiple times at close range with a .223‑caliber rifle. The Sonoma County Sheriff’s Office says Shaun Gallon shot Shamus Gallon in the living room of their home on River Road. A spokesman says their mother was home at the time but not in the room and it was she who called for help. The Press Democrat reports Shaun Gallon was arrested in Guerneville not long after the shooting. Deputies found in his van an AR‑15-style rifle they think he assembled from various individually purchased parts. He was being held without bail and under watch in a mental health cell. The Sheriff’sOffice says they have had 13 contacts with Shaun Gallon in the last 13 years including a 2009 conviction for assault with a deadly weapon for shooting a homemade arrow at two men.

The landlord of an Oakland building that burned in a fatal four-alarm fire this morning had reportedly been trying to evict some tenants since December’s deadly Ghost Ship warehouse fire shed like on the issue of derelict properties with too many people living in them. The San Jose Mercury News reports the 4am fire at the three-story building has left at one person dead and three hospitalized. Several non-profits reportedly leased the building with a drug rehab center on the first floor and several apartments for recovering addicts and transitioning homeless with as many as 80 people there. The landlord claims he didn’t know until after the Ghost Shop fire there were so many agencies and people there and had started trying to get them out. Over the last decade, the city has received 20 complaints about pest infestation, electrical issues, mold, caved-in floors and other issues. No word yet on how the fire started.

A dozen inmates from a prison camp near Willits fixing and maintaining the grounds at the Ukiah Youth Baseball League’s field. The Parlin Fork Conservation Camp working with the league to get prisoners to take up some work the board’s volunteers didn’t have time for. The inmates also help firefighters on the fire lines and do environmental conservation work. The crew is managed in a partnership between Cal Fire and the Department of Corrections. It means prisoners get contracted out to help government agencies and non-profits like the Little League. So the inmates were at the field, cleaning up after years of regular wear and tear and transients staying on the field leaving behind trash and making a mess of things.

A man from Forestville has been arrested for the shooting death of his brother. The Sonoma County Sheriff’s Dept. reports Shaun Gallon was arrested Friday night after his younger brother, Shamus was found after a shooting at a gas station outside Guerneville. The older brother busted soon after the shooting and booked on suspicion of murder. Police say he has a criminal history and has served time for shooting an arrow at others, having weapons and for assault. Apparently the men’s mother reported that the older son had left with a rifle and said the younger one was hit. No word on the motive for the murder, but Shaun Gallon is held without bail.

Parents and community members are invited to the next Lakeport Unified School District Board of Trustees meeting to help in the search for a new leader. The district says you can also take an online survey to assist in the search for a new district superintendent. The meetings, if you can make it, are tomorrow at 3:30 p.m., and Thursday at 6. For more info check with the school district about where you can get that online survey. We’ve linked it to our website and Facebook page too. .

A new poll shows most California residents don’t support the Trump Administration’s new travel ban. The survey by the Public Policy Institute of Calif also says residents overwhelmingly disapprove of the proposed border wall and think illegal immigrants living in the state should be allowed to stay. The poll of residents earlier this month asking Californians for views on government under President Trump. The President and CEO of the institute says the responses are mostly liberal leaning, showing Californians have open mindsets about U.S. borders, national security, globalism and immigration.

As part of the city’s beautification project, the Lakeport City Council says yes to planting more trees. The council approved a contract with a landscaping company for nearly 130-thousand dollars worth of work between First and Fourth Streets. The city’s Public Works Director says planting trees is a big part of the beautification project which also includes improving roadways, pedestrian access on sidewalks and making downtown more enticing for local businesses. The Mayor saying they also listened to what citizens said about the project, and trees were a big part of it.

Too much daytime electricity is clogging up California’s power-grid. The Calif. Independent System Operator or Cal ISO says the amount of daytime energy being used by homes, the government, businesses and industrial solar installations is having the opposite effect so power plant operators are having to shut down the grid during the day to catch up with supply later in the day. The state’s power-grid operators say the prices of electricity drop dramatically on the real-time marketplace. So the increased amount of wind and solar are wasted or “curtailed” because nobody is using it.

The Lake County Board of Supervisors taking up proposals for a new public defender’s contract. Lake Co News reports at the meeting tomorrow, the board will consider a request from staff to negotiate the public defender contract proposals they’ve received. The County Administrative Officer says the current contractor, Lake Defense gave notice and will be done with the County as of May 6th. So the County has to come up with a solution and has put a Request for Proposals. So far they’ve received three and have interviewed all of them. The County likes one and wants the board to start negotiations. Ahart has offered the lowest bid at $1.3 million. The company currently represents Shasta County.

New criminal sentencing rules have been announced for Calif. Prisons. Last Friday, corrections officials announced the new rules which should also help cut some of the prison population by as many as 9,500 inmates over four years. The rules include ideas like reducing inmates’ sentences for getting a college degree or by participating in self-help programs like alcohol and substance abuse support groups and counseling, anger management, life skills, victim awareness, restorative justice and parenting classes. But those on death row or serving life-without-parole sentences could also be eligible to earn credits and lower their sentences too.

Hundreds turn out to plant trees as part of the recovery after the Valley Fire in Lake County. Lake Co News reports about 350 volunteers showed up Saturday to the Middletown Trailside Park for the Middletown Tree Planting Project, organized by the Lake Area Rotary Club Fire Relief Fund. The Rotary says the volunteers were not only from Lake County, but as far as the Oregon Border to Marin County and out to the Sacramento Valley.

A woman from northern Idaho says the reason she crashed into a deer was because she got distracted by a Sasquatch in her rearview mirror. The Moscow-Pullman Daily News reports the woman was driving on Highway 95 last Wednesday and plowed into a deer near Potlatch. She told Deputies she saw a Sasquatch chasing a deer on the side of the road and as she checked her mirrors to see Big Foot again, she hit the deer that ran in front of her. Cops jotted it down as a hit to the deer without a mention of the Sasquatch.

Ukiah’s Water Supply will be discussed at a special workshop of the Ukiah City Council next week. The agenda for the special meeting calls for an overview of the City of Ukiah’s Water Supply including sources, demand, water rights, and pending change petitions. Some of it will center on the Groundwater Characterization Study the Council commissioned as part of their work to comply with the state’s new Sustainable Groundwater management Act. The meeting is Wednesday March 29th at 5pm at the Ukiah Valley Conference Center on S. School Street.

If you’ve ever wanted to be on the Mendocino County Grand Jury, they are now looking for volunteers for the 2017-18 Grand Jury. The 19 members serve for one year and are empowered to investigate the operations of county, city and district governments; provide civil oversight of local government departments and agencies; and respond to citizen complaints. Grand jurors are compensated $25 per full panel meeting and $10 per committee meeting and committee attendance at public meetings. Among other qualifications are: being at least 18 and a U.S. citizen; a resident of Mendocino County for at least one year; fluency in written and spoken English; and not currently serving on any other government board or commission or holding public office. The deadline to apply is April 14.

More marijuana talk by the Mendo County Board of Supervisors. The board prepares to talk about proposed laws for recreational weed at their meeting Tuesday. Last month the board was considering an ordinance for zoning boundaries for personal gardens for recreational use connected to the passage of Proposition 64. County staff was directed to draft language for the law but apparently there’s been potential conflicts found between what’s proposed and what’s already law. Zoning seems to conflict with state law and an outright ban in some areas of the county may not be allowed. They are also trying to figure a primary caregivers rights as a user of recreational cannabis.

The Crisis Services Center for Redwood Community Services has moved so many services are in one building. The crisis center provides services for mental health patients. They moved the center from Dora St. to East Gobbi Street. Apparently there had been an issue with neighbors at the old building. The city manager says the move should completely resolve any old issues in that regard. The executive director of the center said it was a challenge to find the right place and says the original one on South Dora Street was supposed to be a temporary solution.

The Fort Bragg City Council gets a report on tourism after a big hike in funds to promote local tourism. The promotional budget projected for next year, just under $300-thousand dollars, is a massive increase of $220,000 from last year. The city will decide how to use the extra money with the Visit Fort Bragg group, local businesses and community members. The Strategic Marketing Group has updated the council on their findings on tourism, saying the city holds a strong attraction for tourists, with a strong showing of repeat visits by some. It also showed the summer was the busiest season. The market data gathered and associated recommendations will help form a Strategic Plan and a Marketing and Promotions Plan for the city. Those to be presented to Visit Fort Bragg for comment and possible revision, before the next steps.

Republican Calif. Congressman Duncan Hunter is being investigated for potential campaign finance violations. Duncan says they were inadvertent mistakes, but the House Ethics Committee has been investigating him for potentially using campaign funds to cover personal expenses like trips to Hawaii and Italy plus to help pay the school tuition for the Congressman’s kids. The inquiry is being delayed though at the request of the Justice Department. His lawyer says he and his wife repaid his campaign $60,000 and says he fully intends to cooperate with the investigation.

Parks and docs inundated by water in the winter’s flooding are slowing reopening in Lake County. The Record Bee reports some parks are still closed, Library Park and the County Park. The city and County Public Works departments are still cleaning up the parks and preparing them to be reopened to the public. The amount of damage, amount of debris and short staffing have meant it’s taking longer to reopen. Parts of Library Park may be open, while other parts stay closed for safety reasons. There was garbage and sewage in the water there and the grass is still saturated in places. It could be until the end of next week for the grass area near the gazebo to re-open and other areas could take three more weeks. Other areas could take a couple months, and sidewalks that were damaged have no timeline yet as to when they’ll be done. The County Park had less damage. It’s expected to be reopened around March 27th.

A new non-partisan report on California shows its aging infrastructure could be catastrophic and billions of dollars is needed to take care of it. The report by the Legislative Analyst’s office shows one in five residents live in a flood plain. It also says there’s an estimated $575 billion worth of structures at risk of flood damage. The report comes after the historic rainfall this winter which damaged the emergency spillway at Lake Oroville, flooded out San Jose and caused at least 100 million in damage there alone. Almost 214-thousand people had to be evacuated in both areas.

A man from Middletown found with child pornography has been arrested. A tip to Internet Crimes Against Children led to the arrest of Lee Daniel Buckmaster who’s held without bail in the Lake County Jail. The Lake County Sheriff’s Office Major Crimes Unit was in touch with the Crimes Against Children unit regarding the kiddie porn being transmitted online. Buckmaster had a history with police after a similar investigation in October 2015. He was on probation after that case. Deputies say they linked items of Buckmaster’s to child pornography. He’s charged with possession or distribution of child pornography, possession of child pornography with a prior conviction and a violation of probation.

About a week and a half after it started, the final piece of the Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge over Highway 1 is down. Caltrans reports the last bit of the span was yanked out and will be broken apart for recycling. There will be an entirely new bridge made without columns. It will be steel construction and should be done in about six months, weather permitting. The demo and rebuild are costing about 21 million dollars. It’s cut off Big Sur, with all businesses north of the bridge open, Highway 1 closed at Big Sur Station in the north and at Ragged Point on the southern side of the bridge in northern San Luis Obispo County. Anyone south of the bridge is basically stuck. Volunteers, State Parks employees and California Conservation Corps members have been putting a footpath in so residents can get between the northern and southern parts of Big Sur.

There are officially no more evacuated residents in Butte County due to the failing Emergency Spillway at the Oroville Dam. The warnings and advisories have been lifted. The Sheriff says he’s satisfied with the progress so far reinforcing the dam spillways and the effort of the Calif. Dept. of Water Resources to lower the lake. The Sheriff had ordered Oroville residents and those of areas downstream of the Lake to leave their homes February 12th, a day after the emergency spillway failed and water started to flow onto the mountain and erode the earth. A giant crater could be seen in the spillway, which engineers have been working on around the clock ahead of next year’s rainy season.

No more scavenging thru the trash in Clearlake. The City Council has given final approval to the new ordinance against scavenging in residential and business waste containers. The ordinance got the council’s unanimous approval on its second reading. Now police say they will start educating the public on the ordinance but there are no immediate plans to cite anyone yet. When it goes into full effect, those cited could be fined up to $500 and get up to six months in jail with repeated violations.

It’s been under a month since the election, but final numbers show the Lake County Fire Protection District’s Measure D passed. The parcel tax passed by voters in the March 7th special election. Results of the election were certified yesterday, with the measure winning more than the needed two-thirds supermajority. The Lake County Registrar of Voters office released the finally ballot tally showing the measure passed with 67.4 percent. The measure will raise up to $400,000 a year for the fire district to hire six more full timers, including three firefighter-emergency medical technicians and three firefighter-paramedics.

The passenger in Wednesday’s high-speed chase south of Cloverdale has a broken neck and broken back. Kyle Byrne of Redwood Valley is at Stanford University Medical Center. The driver Mary Schafer of Ukiah is facing charges for the chase which started when a Cloverdale cop tried to pull her over for speeding and ended with her SUV flipping across Dry Creek Rd and landing on it’s roof. At the hospital, Schaefer told an officer she was going 100 mph along Dutcher Creek Rd when it ended at Dry Creek and the SUV went airborne. A police spokesman told the Press Democrat it’s not clear why Schaffer didn’t stop in the first place. He said there’s no indication of drugs or alcohol and when asked she said “I thought you were going to pull me over.”

The Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office reporting two recent incidents of Domestic Violence that also included Child Endangerment. On Tuesday in Covelo, Teodoro Rosales was arrested after deputies found him drunk, sleeping in his car. The victim says she was holding their child when he allegedly punched her several times in the head and arm and then drove off. The Sheriff’s Office says he was already on summary probation from a prior domestic violence case. Last Thursday a Willits man was arrested after police say he nearly created a car accident while fighting with a woman in a car. Deputies say Ryan Shields and the victim were with their young son when Shields allegedly threatened to kill the woman and the boy. The woman was driving but says Shields grabbed the steering wheel causing the vehicle to swerve into oncoming traffic, and then back again, almost going off the road. The woman was able to stop the car.

The Lake Area Rotary Club Fire Relief Fund is holding a tree planting day at Middletown Trailside Park this Saturday and they are looking for volunteers to come help plant about 3,000 trees. It starts at 9 a.m. at the park on Dry Creek Cutoff in Middletown. Ever since the Valley fire the Lake Area Rotary Club Fire Relief Fund and #LakeCountyRising have been raising money and working with the Resource Conservation District to propagate about 100,000 trees for the area. The trees have been growing for a year and are ready to plant. Volunteers are asked to bring shovels and gloves and wear appropriate clothing such as long pants and closed-toed shoes. Also bring your own water. A barbecue lunch will be provided. They do ask that you RSVP to Jennifer Strong at the email address jennifer.strong

In order to be in alignment with the state, the City of Ukiah is considering new changes to regulations regarding secondary dwelling units aka mother-in-law units. The Daily Journal reports the Asst. City Attorney saying the state’s made changes because of the thirst for affordable housing so they’ve cut thru some of the red tape regarding accessory dwelling units. She says the changes also include parking requirements. The City Attorney says Ukiah needs to respond to the new state rules set up in January with their own, or let those rules apply. The Planning Commission will take up the matter and there may be some public input after that.

The Mendocino County Board of Supervisors has finished up the Medical Marijuana Cultivation Regulation to oversee the process in unincorporated areas outside the coastal zone. Supervisors took up the matter for the final time and put finishing touches on the rules including a “sunset” provision. It means the grace period for existing grows in denser neighborhoods would be three years instead of two. There was a long debate between Supervisors Dan Gjerde and John McCowen regarding zoning exemptions on the coast. The new rules will be administered by the County Department of Agriculture and Planning and Building Services, not the Sheriff’s office. Anyone applying will be told they have to go thru the state and county for review and final approval, which could even include a public hearing. The ordinance is supposed to get a final vote in 2 weeks, and if it passes, it goes into effect at the beginning of May.

Assemblyman Jim Wood says it’s not a good idea to meet a budget deficit from moving money from landing fees on commercial fisheries. The Assemblyman has sent a letter to an Assembly budget subcommittee against the Gov. Jerry Brown’s idea to use landing fees to pay for a deficit of about $20 million dollars at the Department of Fish and Wildlife. The U-S Secretary of Commerce has declared the crab season a federal disaster. But Wood says as the vice chair of the Joint Committee on Fisheries and Aquaculture, he’s against the fee.

A high-speed police chase ends near Cloverdale with a car crashing thru a guardrail and rolling. The police chief in Cloverdale reports the driver of an SUV, Mary Schaefer of Ukiah was with a male passenger who were both seriously injured in the crash yesterday over Dutcher Creek. Their car landed on its hood after rolling. The crash after a police officer tried pulling the driver over for speeding. The chief says it was shocking the two weren’t more seriously injured after flying over the creek and into an embankment of ivy. The passenger was pinned inside, bleeding from a head wound. The chief says the two were taken to the hospital, with what appeared to be non- life-threatening injuries. The driver going at speeds of 95 mph at times, with cops in two patrol cars chasing them. Police chief says the driver will face charges, including evading police.

Congressman Mike Thompson introducing a bill in the house to exempt seismic retrofits from federal taxes. Thompson says the cost to protect your property from an earthquake is already tax free at the state level, but some efforts to protect homes are taxed by the federal government.

Gov. Jerry Brown visiting Washington DC as his administration reports parts of the new Trumpcare plan, to repeal and replace Obamacare would cost the state billions. The analysis for Calif. would impact Medi-Cal so lawmakers have to decide how much money to spend on the program. The governor’s office says Trumpcare would cost more than 4 billion dollars in 2020 and nearly $19 billion over a decade or the state will have to make cuts on health care for the poor. The analysis released yesterday, a day before the U.S. House is set to vote on the repeal and replacement of the Affordable Care Act. Brown on Capitol Hill yesterday saying Trumpcare is a dangerous bill, written by people who don’t know what they’re talking about.

A new report says if the Lake Oroville dam is not totally fixed by the next rainy season, Calif. could be at a quote, "very significant risk". The report by an independent team of consults sent to the federal government last week says the emergency spillway at the nation’s tallest dam is being repaired and they’re working 24/7 to repair it by next fall. Repair contracts have to be awarded by June, says the report, so workers can have the new emergency spillway up and running by Nov. 1st. A five member expert team quoted in the report saying everyone recognizes it’s a demanding schedule with no room to expand. The team made up of both state and federal water and dam-safety officials chosen by the state after a request by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.

Tuition hikes for some Calif. universities. California State University’s governing board says yes to the first tuition increase in a half dozen years. The board of trustees voted 11-8 for more money to attend the schools going up $270 a year beginning in the fall. Tuition has been near $5,500, now it goes over. The Chancellor had been urging trustees to approve the rate hike saying they have to get more faculty in and add classes due to enrollment increases and not enough money from the state. Before the vote, some students spoke against the increase. The increase for the state’s 23 campuses.

A new office being set up by the Small Business Association (SBA) due to winter flooding so the agency can start offering federal disaster loans. They’re not just for businesses, private nonprofits, homeowners and renters can also get loans if they’ve had loss or damage after the storms and flooding in Lake County from Feb. 1st through Feb. 25th. Applications are available now for Business Physical Disaster loans, Economic Injury Disaster loans or Home Disaster loans. They’re for property damage up to a loss of business or work because of the flooding.

The federal government has announced help for anyone who lost work due to this winter’s floods. The U.S. Department of Labor announced a National Dislocated Worker Grant for the state Employment Development Department. $36 million to the state with a first release of $12 million to help create temporary jobs for around 1,800 people.

A stray cat found with her head caught up in a peanut butter jar has died, but she gave birth first. The cat, nick-named Skippy by shelter workers in San Jacinto, had a litter of four kittens: Peanut, Butter, Jelly and Honey. Then Skippy had to be euthanized. She was found with her head stuck in the jar of Peanut Butter Monday by a woman who called Animal Services to help her get the container off the animal. Apparently Skippy was infested with maggots, had spots of dead tissue on her and appeared to be malnourished and dehydrated.