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Category Archives: 94.5 K-Wine News

94.5 K-Wine Local News Reports

Local officials held a community information meeting about coronavirus. The Mendocino County Public Health Officer Mimi Doohan. Dr. Doohan spoke on the virus and her expertise and says she’s closely following the pandemic.  She says they’re being very transparent about the disease in the county…

The County is reminding the public not to shake hands, stay home when you’re sick and to keep about six feet away from others. She says it’s usually a pretty mild illness, like getting the flu. For more information a call center has been set up that’ll be open until 5 pm today, after hours, the phone number will be rolled over to the dispatch center: 707-234-6052 rolls you can also email callcenter@mendocinocounty.org

Fort Bragg is getting proactive against coronavirus. At an unofficial State of the City address, the Mayor William Lee and other city officials at city hall yesterday spoke on the issue, reminding folks to stay calm. There are five people in the hospital in Fort Bragg with respiratory illness, 2 diagnosed with the flu, but the mayor didn’t say if any of the patients were tested for the virus. He confirmed the city has enough testing kits for the population and that they can get more if needed. The city manager also on hand saying the city’s getting ready to open an Emergency Operations Center like they had during the PG&E power shutoffs last year. She says though that there’s no intention of opening the Center unless there’s a confirmed case in Mendocino County.

The latest Grand Jury report has been released in Mendocino County. The 2020 Continuity Report has not been done for ten years. It looks at prior grand jury investigations on county and city government and special districts. The reports generally recommend changes and provide a critique of department operations. Last year they looked at the Board of Supervisors, Mendocino County CEO, County Office of Education, and the Ukiah Valley Sanitation District.

Repair work is complete at the Ukiah Wastewater Treatment Plant. Due to dry weather last month, the ponds still in terrible condition after winter rains the last few years. The Public Works Director Tim Eriksen says levees around the percolation ponds at the Wastewater Treatment Plant were damaged last year. A contractor has been hired after things were on hold due to the City’s recycled water project.

The monthly meeting of the Little Lake Fire Protection District and the discussion of ambulance service came up for Ukiah. The MedStar Ambulance CEO was on hand looking for support from the fire chief to stay in business in Ukiah. Which he got. Then they discussed a firehouse update and where they’re at with the buildout. There have been plan reviews and expenditure reports to pour over and discussions on design. They also discussed new fire rigs, already purchased and adopting a new fire code. The staff noted at the meeting that they’ve only just begun work on the preliminary budget.

A town hall with the Mendocino County Public Health Officer Mimi Doohan, zero cases in Lake and Mendocino County, Sonoma County had 2 cases and Marin had 3.

The latest numbers show there have been 177 cases in the state and 4 deaths, the epicenter is said to be the Bay Area. The County is following the state on mass public gatherings, that they should be canceled or postponed. And the ones that do go on need to be much smaller, with enough room for social distancing.

Sonoma County is taking decisive action, suspending activities, closing schools and in person services thru the weekend. Sonoma State announced a temporary closure, Santa Rosa Junior College, and the most populous schools are suspending in person classes, starting spring break early. Sonoma County school administrators are reportedly planning for a possible extended closure during the break due to the expanding global pandemic. The Press Democrat reports the Sonoma County Office of Education has advised local administrators to also reschedule or cancel extracurricular activities, including dances, field trips and theater productions.

Events canceled in Lake County… the Soper Reese Theatre and Lake County Winegrape Commission announced canceling or postponing events due to coronavirus. There are no cases of the disease confirmed in Lake County, but it’s in accordance with a directive from the state to postpone or cancel non-essential gatherings through the end of the month. So the March 14th performance of the Rural Jazz Collective and March 21st performance of Wendy Dewitt’s Hell’a Piano Party are canceled. As is the Lake County Winegrape Commission’s Momentum 2020, a local wine industry event set for March 26th.

Normal visits will not be allowed at the Lake County Jail. The Sheriff’s Office announced it’s because of COVID-19. The Sonoma County Sheriff’s Office Detention Division made the same announcement. The Lake County office says they understand how visitation is essential for rehabilitation, but right now, they have to make difficult decisions to protect the health and wellness of all who live, work at or visit the jail. Family and legal visits will be held as scheduled for a spouse or domestic partner, children, parents and siblings only. They’re also canceling nonessential events and tours. They’re also working to continuously keep staff informed of the situation, like giving them information from the CDC and Public Health agencies.

The Napa County Public Health Officer has declared a local health emergency. Much like Lake and Mendocino County before it. Dr. Karen Relucio declared the local emergency for Napa County in response to the COVID-19 pandemic but they have no confirmed cases. It’s just to get resources faster, move quicker with emergency planning and response, and get future reimbursement by the state and federal governments if there are cases. The declaration is for seven days and has to be ratified by the Napa County Board of Supervisors. So far 33 counties, cities and tribes have declared public health emergencies, including Lake, Sacramento, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Orange, Santa Clara, San Diego and Sonoma Counties.

California Community colleges are suspending their in person classes due to the coronavirus. Many are doing online instruction and calling for an early spring break first. Presidents of various campuses held a webinar earlier this week and the statewide chancellor said they don’t have to go thru a formal approval process to do so. There are 114 community colleges in the state with about a quarter of them announcing online instruction to prevent the spread of the virus. There are more than 2 million students in the system, most go part time. Yuba Community College in Clearlake, (Woodland Community College) announced online yesterday that they were one of the many. The City College of San Francisco canceled in person classes and is moving into spring break a week early. Same with two in Santa Clara County where one Corona patient died. Same for Berkeley City College and the College of Alameda.

Calif. Congressmembers Mike Thompson, John Garamendi, Jared Huffman and Doris Matsui have introduced a bill so cruise lines will have to pay back passengers who had their trips canceled because of the coronavirus. This for tickets purchased on or before February 1, 2020. It would apply to cancellations from the cruise line or the passenger because of the ongoing pandemic. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has advised that travelers defer all cruise ship travel at this time. Huffman says it’s important for travelers to cancel if they don’t feel safe without worrying about losing their hard earned money.

Health officials in Sonoma County getting aggressive against the coronavirus. Certain hospitals, clinics and urgent care centers will start testing in the county. They’re starting a so-called “enhanced surveillance” program to test as many as 80 patients who present with flu-like symptoms at a time. The program is to see if Covid-19 is being transmitted from person to person in the County. The County’s interim health officer Dr. Sundari Mase says they want to determine if there are any coronavirus infections in the community they haven’t detected, going from a passive stance to a more proactive response. Mase says there’s been no new cases of coronavirus since Saturday.

An urgency ordinance adopted in Ukiah due to the homeless encampments near the Ukiah Municipal Airport. The Daily Journal reports the City Council adopted the ordinance so the open space near the airport is noted as Runway Safety Areas to be kept clear. The Asst. City Attorney says the issue’s more urgent now as groups of people have been loitering in the area which is unsafe. There are two areas across from the northern and southern ends of the runway owned by the city that will now be kept vacant. They could affect if there is a flight that either overshoots or undershoots the runway or needs to make an emergency landing. So those caught in these areas will be ticketed for trespassing.

A proposed subdivision in Ukiah referred to the Planning Commission by the City Council will probably be appealed. The Daily Journal reports after the subdivision on North School Street went before City Engineer Tim Eriksen in January many neighbors nearby appealed saying there would be terrible traffic and that they were opposed to the three plot subdivision, but two parcels might be fine. Then when it came time to have public comment, nobody spoke out against it as Eriksen approved it. He even told a few audience members there, they could speak out if they wanted to. A City Council member appealed the subdivision for his district due to property value decreases and possible flooding. The City Council member also reportedly lives across from the plot of land. That Planning Commission is expected to get the appeal March 25th.

The Redwood Valley Water Infrastructure Retrofit Project is moving forward after the Board of Supervisors gave the project a thumbs up. The Board giving the approval for the Department of Transportation to advertise for bids and find the lowest bidder for the construction and improvements. The Daily Journal reports the planned Retrofit Project would help stop earthquake hazards that threaten the Redwood Valley County Water District and protect infrastructure should there be an earthquake in the future. The project to replace more than 10,000 feet of main water lines, including the installation of as much as 3,300 feet of new water main lines, and replace 146 water services lateral connections.

The name of a woman killed in a car crash on Highway 20 has been released. The Lake County Sheriff’s Office reports 58 year old Mary Mahoney of Guerneville died after her Toyota 4Runner went down an embankment by Walker Ridge Road Tuesday night. She apparently tried to swerve back onto the road after driving onto the dirt shoulder but rolled the SUV. It’s also reported, she did not have her seatbelt on. She was thrown from the vehicle and died at the scene. She had a 20 year old female passenger with her who had minor injuries and was flown to an out of county hospital.

All in-person classes at Sonoma State University have been temporarily suspended due to the coronavirus. There were only three days of classes that would be online as it’s spring break next week. The college says they’ll resume regular classes March 24th depending on the status of the health crisis then. They school says the move to online classes is so faculty and staff have enough time to figure out the whole remote or virtual class model in case the virus outbreak gets more serious in the last several weeks of spring semester which ends May 8th.

A two week quarantine has been put in place at a Northern California assisted living facility after an elderly patient there died from the virus. Carlton Senior Living has confirmed a resident at their facility in Elk Grove died Tuesday at a hospital. Now the 140 residents there are being isolated in their apartments. In Washington State there were 19 deaths at a similar facility, so the Gov. banned all visitors at nursing homes. The Sacramento County health dept says they’re investigating if any other exposure happened at the Elk Grove facility and says no visitors will be allowed at that home until there are no contagious residents.

New policies have been announced by the governor regarding large public gatherings. The State says all gatherings should be postponed or canceled across Calif until at least the end of March. And any gatherings that do go on should not be with more than 250 people, and that those events that do proceed should only if the organizers can attain social distancing of 6 feet per person. And further, that gatherings of those at higher risk for severe illness from COVID-19, should be limited to no more than 10 people, while also following social distancing guidelines. The Gov. says it’s only for a short time saying it could save dozens of lives and preserve critical health care resources. Gatherings noted as events or bringing together people in a single room or single space at the same time, like at an auditorium, stadium, arena, large conference room, meeting hall, cafeteria, or any other indoor or outdoor space.

Local hemp industry regulations have been discussed at the Lake County Board of Supervisors meeting. The board will have to read the regulations again at two future meetings for final adoption. There will now be a new permitting process for hemp growers, stricter restrictions on the local industry, setbacks for grow sites will be established in a new zoning ordinance will also be part of the new regulations. Anyone interested in growing will have to have background checks, prove they have land ownership or a lease agreement for cultivation, identification of a legal source of water for cultivation, a zoning permit, registration with an applicable water board, a pollen management and crop destruction plan, and a surety bond.

A former High School music teacher has pleaded not guilty to sex crimes with children. Former Kelseyville High teacher Cory Cunningham has been charged with sexual penetration by object on a minor, willful child endangerment, contacting a minor to commit a felony (lewd act) and annoying or molesting a child under 18. He’s charged for a December 2019 incident with a 17-year-old student. He was first placed on administrative leave, then arrested. The school district has a lawyer representing it in the case, but the superintendent says they’re not sharing information that could hurt the case. Cunningham taught band, jazz ensemble, choir, guitar and music appreciation. He is due back in court April 27th for a preliminary hearing.

Congressman Mike Thompson’s Phone Act with Congressmember Anna Eshoo of Palo Alto has been referred by the Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Communications and Technology to the full committee before a possible vote on the House floor. If it passes, residents who lost their homes in natural disasters would be able to keep their phone numbers for free. Survivors currently in danger of losing their phone numbers, and current law prohibits phone companies from allowing folks to keep their phone numbers as they rebuild their homes.

Five University of California medical centers are taking on the coronavirus, offering tests in house. UC Davis Medical Center released the news yesterday they’re starting their own in-house testing for coronavirus, making it the first health system in the country to do so. UC Davis hospital officials say they’ve been able to treat three of the first patients in the country to end up sick and will use their newly attained knowledge to help with the testing shortage. None of their healthcare workers got sick either. This because of a lack of federal government test kits. The tests at labs also at UC San Francisco, UCLA and UC San Diego which can all be turned around within 24 hours. UC Davis and Irvine are the next who are expected to offer in-house coronavirus tests.

An executive order has been issued by the Governor waiving the one week waiting period for unemployment. Governor Newsom also set other guidelines including delaying the deadline for state tax filing by 60 days for individuals and businesses who cannot file on time due to public health requirements related to COVID-19 filings, the order directs residents to follow public health directives and guidance, including the cancellation of large non-essential gatherings that do not meet state criteria; allows the state to commandeer property for temporary residences and medical facilities for quarantining, isolating or treating people; allows local or state legislative bodies to hold meetings via teleconference and make the meetings accessible electronically; and allows local and state emergency administrators to act quickly to protect public health.

FEMA has agreed to allow wildfire victims be compensated by PG&E before the agency. A tentative deal has been announced by the Bankruptcy Court and part of the deal is that FEMA will not go after repayment from wildfire claims after there had been a threat that the federal government may demand getting its federal disaster aid paid back by survivors. FEMA has also agreed to reduce its claim by $3 billion, from $4 to $1 billion. The lawyer who represents wildfire victims says until the victims are paid, FEMA will receive no money. A FEMA spokesperson has confirmed the details of the deal and says it’s satisfied with the tentative agreement and says, “the needs of disaster survivors are placed first” and that the federal agency “holds PG&E accountable for expenditures of federal disaster assistance” for fires caused by the utility’s electrical equipment.

Sonoma County says they have no evidence of communal spread of coronavirus. Local health officials says they’ve got an aggressive plan to fight the illness from spreading which includes local testing, targeted tracking at hospital emergency rooms and recommends anyone organizing a public event consider canceling. The county’s interim health officer, Dr. Sundari Mase spoke to the Board of Supervisors saying it’s hard to track the virus, because it’s so new and some who get sick never show any symptoms. 29 people were tested since the weekend and all tests were negative.

The latest numbers show a pretty low voter turnout in Mendocino County. The Registrar of Voters Office reports of the nearly 25,000 voters, only about a third of them, or 31% got out the vote in the 2020 Presidential Primary. There are still no official results because the office has a month from the election to post the State of Vote.

Some school districts in Calif. say they’re not getting enough money in their budgets, only a 2.3% cost of living adjustment. Apparently they’ve been expecting 3%. Some say that divide of less than three quarters of a percent is a big deal as some don’t have enough to cover basic operating expenses with higher pension expenses, special education costs and the fact that the minimum wage went up. Some districts are also dealing with lower enrollment. Now the coronavirus is tapping reserves for larger districts that may have to close, like Elk Grove, which boasts enrollment of 60,000 students.

Several dozen budget changes are being discussed in Willits. At the City Council meeting tonight, 61 changes will be considered for the 2019-2020 budget. The Willits News reports they’ll work on high priority goals and approve upcoming road projects. The agenda notes the budget amendments as decreasing the budget balance because of insurance costs, decreasing the Enterprise Fund because of Capital Improvement Projects and a decease to the Special Fund because of personnel costs in the Police Department. All of this and the agenda can be found online at the City’s website.

A community forum is planned in Ukiah. The public’s invited to the discussion of the Downtown Streetscape Project tomorrow. Construction’s set to start next month. If you attend you can meet the City of Ukiah Project Team, see the final designs, and ask questions. It’s at 6 pm tomorrow at the Ukiah Valley Conference Center, 200 S. School Street.

More than 40 million dollars is being distributed among local groups and businesses to help reduce the risk of wildfires. CAL FIRE awarded the money so 55 local fire prevention projects can be completed for hazardous fuel reduction, wildfire preparedness planning and fire prevention education. Lake Co News reports the Clear Lake Environmental Research Center, got more than $3 million for the first phase of the Lake County Hazardous Fuel Reduction Project. The Cal Fire director says they’re doubling their efforts to “clear brush, inspect homes for defensible space and reduce the risk of wildfires. He says the “local projects will play a critical role in augmenting our fire prevention efforts.” Some of that includes removing dead and dying trees that will protect communities from possible wildfires in the future. The agency’s put up more than $150 million dollars the last 6 years for hundreds of projects to address the risk of wildfire.

There are now nearly 160 cases of coronavirus in Calif. The Department of Public Health released new numbers yesterday and announced the creation of an online hub so you can access information about how to protect against the illness. 157 recorded cases of the virus, including 2 deaths, but as Lake Co News reports, that doesn’t include passengers from the docked Grand Princess cruise ship in Oakland. The website also includes guidance for all sorts of health care facilities, schools, event organizers, first responders, employers, healthcare workers, how to clean your home for coronavirus positive patients, using cleaners at schools, labs and healthcare facilities from Cal Osha.

One person is dead and another has been hurt after a solo car crash near Clearlake Oaks. Lake Co News reports the crash happened last night just after 8:15 p.m. by mile marker 37 on Highway 20 near Walker Ridge Road. The California Highway Patrol on the scene of a white SUV that had veered off the highway and traveling down an embankment. The CHP says the car went about 100 to 200 feet down the embankment. The driver was unresponsive when they arrived so an air ambulance was requested. But the driver died soon after. A passenger had minor injuries and was taken to a hospital, but later they were taken to an out-of-county trauma center.

A middle school student in Lakeport has been arrested for threatening statements. Police say a school resource officer was alerted by school staff about a former Terrace Middle School student who was not on campus and is on probation for making the threats. Police notified the probation department. The school resource officer and probation officers then went to the student’s home and found an unloaded Smith & Wesson .40-caliber handgun, no ammo was found though. The kid was arrested and taken to Juvenile Hall.

A local emergency in Mendocino County’s been ratified by the Mendocino County Board of Supervisors due to COVID- 19 (coronavirus). The Mendocino County Health Officer Dr. Noemi Doohan declared the public health emergency last week for the County to better coordinate emergency planning and coordination between state and federal agencies. The county can also get money back from state and federal governments for any expenditures it incurs related to the virus. Just like Lake County announced, they’re working with officials to monitor and respond to the virus with the California Department of Public Health and the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Neither county has any confirmed cases.

A meeting’s set between the Ukiah City Council and the Ukiah Valley Sanitation District. The meeting tonight to present a rate study after analyzing wastewater revenue requirements for the City and the District, analyze fiscal resources, to maintain wastewater services, including operations, debt service, and capital improvements. The Daily Journal reports the two are also going to consider Prop 218, regarding new rates. A 2006 bond may be refinanced to pay for upgrades to the Wastewater Treatment Plant and reduce the debt for both parties.

A five year contract has been agreed to for an online tax auction bidding service for Lake County. The Board of Supervisors agreed to the agreement to help sell tax defaulted parcels. District 2 Supervisor Bruno Sabatier wants more than the 300 properties noted in the contract that would be up for auction each year of the agreement. The $262,500 contract maximum with Bid4Assets, Inc. out of Maryland would give that company $175 fee per property with a maximum of 300 auctioned properties a year. And District 5 Supervisor Rob Brown says he just wants the taxes paid, hoping to avoid tax sales altogether. The board did end up voting unanimously, with one supervisor absent to enter into the agreement.

Two people aboard the Grand Princess cruise ship docked at the Port of Oakland are suing Princess cruises after they were quarantined on board and forced to stay in their rooms for fear the coronavirus would spread.  One of the passengers got off on February 21st after showing symptoms, and later died. The ship and crew and several dozen passengers were aboard after, headed to Hawaii. Now Eva and Ronald Weissberger of Broward County, Florida say they were exposed “to actual risk of immediate physical injury.” They say the cruise line only had passengers fill out a sheet of paper saying they weren’t sick and nobody was questioned further. They say the cruise line informed passengers 4 days after they took off about the risk and say, had they known, they would have stayed in Hawaii where the ship docked. They go on to say the company chose profits over safety of passengers, crew and the general public by operating as business as usual. They are seeking $1 million in damages.

 

 

 

The Mendocino County Assessor-County Clerk-Recorder Katrina Bartolomie has announced they’ve still got more than 15,000 ballots to process in the official canvass after Super Tuesday. There are 14,993 Vote By Mail ballots to process and 1,575 Conditional Provisional/Provisional ballots to review and process. They do have 30 days to complete the process before announcing the official Statement of Vote, which breaks down results by precinct.

There are no confirmed cases of coronavirus in Mendocino County, but the County has announced they’re getting ready in case there’s a pandemic. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) are encouraging counties and cities to prepare. But Mendocino County has NO evidence of community spread so far. The Mendocino County Health Officer Dr. Noemi Doohan has not ordered any events be canceled, but the County’s encouraging event organizers have a plan to modify, cancel, or postpone due to the outbreak of coronavirus, promote messages discouraging sick people from attending events, encourage social distancing and possible live stream participation and have prevention supplies at events, like soap, hand sanitizers, and tissues.

The Governor and mayors in the state had a meetup to discuss a plan to fight homelessness. The crisis hit Calif hard last year, with a 16% spike. The housing crisis is not helping, neither is the state’s cost of living. The governor has a plan to set aside $750 million for 10 regions which have not been named yet. The proposal was reportedly updated Friday so that local governments or groups of governments can be their own regional administrators. But the mayors of 13 of the largest cities were varied in their degrees of agreement. Nine of them supporting a proposal to come up with $500 million a year for homelessness programs by raising taxes on some homeowners.

Another death in the state from coronavirus. This time in Santa Clara County. In Lake County, the Public Health Officer Dr. Gary Pace has not said how many tests they’ve conducted, but that there are no cases and the chance of a spread here is low. Some tests have been done, but they’re all negative. Pace says several county health departments in the Bay Area are not releasing details publicly on testing.  There were almost 40 cases in Santa Clara County out of the 130 cases in the state.

A man in Lakeport accused of illegally carrying a gun onto school grounds and having drugs on him has pleaded not guilty. Michael Richard King is charged with illegal possession of a weapon (a felony), possession of weapon on school grounds, possession of methamphetamine and possession of more than one ounce of marijuana. His lawyer asked for the case to be continued as there may be a resolution. They’re headed back to court March 24th after the January incident where King was arrested for carrying a knife on a middle school campus. The school resource officer saw him and his knife and arrested him there. He was held on $15,000 bail, but is no longer in jail.

Some official information’s been sent to public schools in Calif. since the outbreak of coronavirus. The California public health dept sent the guidance with a statement from the Gov. which said it’s a matter of time until some schools will have to be closed because of the virus. It goes on to say that school districts need to prepare for various scenarios so parents and students can plan for what would happen if their local school faced closure. This came just after the Elk Grove Unified School District, the 5th largest in the state, closed, after a family had to be quarantined after at least one of the family members tested positive for the virus. The guidance sent over the weekend as Stanford University announced all classes would be online. As did USC this week, and may continue beyond that. UC Berkeley also closed, suspending in person classes until the end of the month. UC Davis is allowing students and teachers to make their own decision.

A new report shows California is number four on the list for the highest rate of homelessness in the U.S. PsyDprograms.org, a psychology degree website studied the crisis on the State of Homelessness in America. They used data through 2019 from the Department of Housing and Urban Development showing the rankings across the country. Calif. had nearly 383 homeless out of 100,000 people and had the 47th highest percentage of women in a homeless population and 50 highest percentage of children in a homeless population. The 10 highest homelessness rates: D.C., New York, Hawaii, California, Oregon, Washington, Massachusetts, Alaska, Nevada and Vermont. The lowest was Mississippi.

The 4th annual senior summit is canceled. The event has been planned by the Lake County Silver Foundation to honor seniors for inspirational lives, achievements and their continuing legacy. But the foundation says since the event is set for April 4th, they’re concerned about the large group gathering especially as seniors have been named the most vulnerable for coronavirus, so they’re postponing. The group says they’ll keep the public informed, plus they’re coming up with health and resource newsletter with information for Lake County seniors. Anyone who signed up will be notified by phone when the new event is happening.

But in Ukiah, the Redwood Region Logging Conference is still happening. For their 2020 Achievement Award, they’ve named Willits resident and businessman Phil Shuster. The event, its 82nd, is happening March 20th at the Redwood Empire Fairgrounds. Shuster’s been working in the timber industry for five decades. He has a degree in forestry and has been working in the field ever since and has been active in various Timber Industry organizations.

The California Department of Public Health asking residents at higher risk for serious illness from coronavirus to try to reduce their risk. Those groups include the elderly, those with compromised immune systems, others with serious chronic medical conditions like heart disease, diabetes and lung disease. A reminder to wash your hands longer than 20 seconds especially after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing, or having been in a public place. Try not to touch your eyes, nose or mouth with unwashed hands. Avoid close contact with those who are sick, stay away from large gatherings and crowds and stay home as often as possible.

The Clearlake City Council moving forward to accept a state grant so the city can be prepared for future public safety power shutoffs. This after PG&E had several intentional power downs last fall in severe fire weather with seasonal high winds and dry conditions. A grant application was sent to the California Office of Emergency Services. The city applied for and received a $268,500 Public Safety Power Shutoff Resiliency Allocation to Cities grant. The city received the full amount of what it applied for. The city council discussed the grant at their meeting last week.  Lake Co News reports the grants are for cities that are incorporated. So they get prepared and can respond to the power shutoffs by buying backup generators, create continuity plans and post-event reports, conduct risk assessments for infrastructure and public education materials.

A medical emergency reported in Fort Bragg has the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office reporting to the scene. An off duty Deputy Sheriff had reportedly overdosed so a sergeant who responded, administering Narcan and calling their boss, the Sheriff. Apparently drug paraphernalia and drugs were found at the house. The Sheriff has asked the Sonoma County Sheriff’s Office to investigate and their Narcotics team was assigned to the investigation too. A search warrant was served by the Sonoma County Sheriff’s Dept. No more info has been released, except that the off-duty deputy involved has been put on paid administrative leave, which is standard policy.

An update released by the United States Department of Health and Human Services and the California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services on the Princess Cruise Ship that was docked in the Port of Oakland to offload several hundred passengers who may have been exposed to the coronavirus. More than 400 people were disembarked including 173 US residents yesterday. 149 were taken to Travis Air Force Base, including 24 who were transported on an ambulance. 234 were Canadians, all but 2 went home. More passengers disembarked today.

The public health officer in Lake County has declared a local public health emergency. Monday, Dr. Gary Pace declared the emergency, even though there are no cases of coronavirus, also known as COVID-19.  It’s so the County can be proactive and expedite their planning and response to any potential cases and to get additional resources available for the County to limit and slow community spread of the disease. The risk is still low according to Pace, but the agency is asking all community members to plan ahead for possible local cases and the possibility of community spread.  The County reports working closely with federal, state, and local partners to provide the public with accurate information about actions to be taken to reduce the spread and if you need to, care for those who may become ill with this virus.  

People Can Protect Themselves By:

The best way to prevent the spread of illness, including; seasonal flu, novel coronavirus (COVID-19) and other respiratory illness is to practice everyday illness prevention steps:

  • Washing hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing
  • If soap and water are not readily available, use alcohol-based sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol, making sure to rub your hands together until the sanitizer is dry
  • Cover you cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash
  • Avoiding touching eyes, nose or mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoiding close contact with people who are sick.
  • Staying home if you are sick, especially from work, school and public places.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.

Personal Preparation Measures Include:

  • Gradually stock up extra supplies of important items, such as: soap, hand sanitizer, tissues, over the counter medications and prescription medications.
  • Gradually stock up on non-perishable foods.
  • Create a back-up plan for work, school and childcare in the event of closures.
  • Talk to your workplace about getting ready. Plan for telework, if possible.
  • Create a space in your home to care for sick family members.
  • Replace handshakes with elbow-bumps – make a game of this with your kids.

What to Do if You Think You’re Sick:

Previously, all testing was being performed at the CDC laboratory in Atlanta.

Diagnostic testing for Coronavirus is becoming more available with state testing at nineteen (19) California Public Health Laboratories including in Sonoma County.  Commercial labs like Quest are now offering these tests.  Unfortunately, the capacity continues to be limited, so during this transition period, only the highest risk patients are recommended to receive testing.  Speak with your medical provider if you have symptoms. 

Call Ahead if You Have Symptoms:

If you develop a fever, cough and shortness of breath, and believe you could have COVID-19, notify your healthcare provider by phone. Call ahead so that you can be safely evaluated and prevent exposing others.

Always check with trusted sources for the latest accurate information about novel coronavirus COVID-19 by visiting the following websites:

 CDC Website: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov

CDPH Website:

https://www.cdph.ca.gov/Programs/CID/DCDC/Pages/Immunization/nCOV2019.aspx

and/or contact Lake County Public Health (707) 263-1090             http://health.co.lake.ca.us/

 

A young man in Willits has been arrested on several charges related to an altercation with his girlfriend. Deputies say they got a call from the female victim that her live in boyfriend Chandler Bowers physically assaulted her at their home last Monday morning. She says he got very angry and head butted her, then threw a wireless speaker at her. Her toddler was near by at the time. The woman says Bowers kept attacking her, grabbing her hair, taking her to the ground and hitting her in the torso. They say she had visible injuries, so Bowers was arrested nearby. He was booked on felony domestic battery, child endangerment and false imprisonment and held on $25,000.00 bail.

More tests being made available for the coronavirus in Mendocino County. The County Public Health Dept. reported Friday that LabCorp and Quest are able to test for the virus. The Public Health office is also working with local healthcare providers to help identify those at high risk of getting the illness. The agency says whether a resident is tested privately or thru the County’s Public Health system, it’s mandatory reporting for positive test results. There are two residents who were tested in Mendocino County Friday, one was in the hospital and quickly tested with a negative result, the other is still awaiting their results. There have been no confirmed cases of coronavirus in the County.

A town hall’s been held by Lakeport police on their “community policing” policies. They spoke about what lawmakers are working in with regards to public safety, neighborhood watch, the police canine program, crime statistics, officer training, a security camera registration program, an ongoing community survey, de-escalation and crisis intervention training, and police recruitment. The Record Bee reports the Lakeport Police Chief Brad Rasmussen says their trying to provide the info to the public and they’re looking to the public to help inform other community members. The chief says staff recruitment is a major challenge, as is recruitment and retention across the country. They want the public to fill out surveys to let them know how they’re doing. You can pick them up on the department’s website, at city hall or at the police department

Coronavirus taking hold across the country with closures of schools, businesses and canceled events. The Lake County Board of Supervisors is getting an update tomorrow morning from the county Public Health officer and discuss possible work changes related to the illness. They’ll also decide if they should continue Friday office closures. Dr. Gary Pace will be at tomorrow’s meeting with an update on coronavirus after he spoke last week at both city councils in Clearlake and Lakeport. He said then that there were no confirmed cases of the illness. The board’s also considerin a new ordinance for industrial hemp regulations.

No new cases of coronavirus in Sonoma County after contact with nearly 80 residents aboard a cruise ship that came back to the Bay Area from Mexico last month with at least two people aboard who had the virus. But there are still test results to come back of some residents who came into contact with the sick individuals aboard the Princess Cruises ship. Gov. Newsom made an announcement yesterday that another cruise ship was disembarking thousands who were potentially exposed to the virus at the Port of Oakland. The ship had been parked offshore as folks aboard were tested for the virus. Half of those tested were infected. More than 2,400 American passengers on the ship are being quarantined for 14 days at one of three U.S. military bases including more than 960 from Calif. who’ll be taken to Travis Air Force Base in Solano County.

The California Department of Public Health released new numbers on the virus. As of yesterday morning there were 114 confirmed cases of COVID-19 across the state. One person died last week from the illness. More than 10,000 people are self-monitoring after travel through the U.S. through SFO or LAX. The Department of Public Health says of the 114 positive cases, 21 were passengers who tested positive for the illness on the Grand Princess cruise ship. They’re urging Californians who feel they have symptoms or who may have been in contact with someone with the virus to call their doctor and not to go to a clinic or ER.

A strong, but not very long lasting earthquake hit the Mendocino Coast. Last night the 5.9 was recorded about 70 miles off the coast of Eureka, about a mile deep. It happened a minute before 8pm last night. No injuries have been reported or any damage reports as of yet either.  The National Tsunami Warning Center also released a statement saying there was no tsunami expected.

The biggest school district in Northern California and the fifth-largest in the state says they’ll close this week due to the coronavirus. Elk Grove Unified School District in southern Sacramento County closing after an infected family is quarantined. So the school officials made the announcement Saturday, they’d cancel all classes and student events from the 7th to the 13th of March. They will make an announcement on Thursday if they plan to stay closed. The district also says it’ll move their spring break up to make it this week so it doesn’t impact student learning and there’s no loss of school days. There are more than 60,000 students in the district’s 42 elementary schools, nine middle schools and nine high schools.

Mendocino County’s Public Health Officer is talking about the coronavirus… Dr. Noemi Doohan speaking about what a pandemic is, saying, it’s when “a new (novel) version of a communicable disease becomes rapidly widespread around the world. An example of a pandemic is the influenza outbreak of 1918.” She says the coronavirus usually causes the common cold, but the novel coronavirus or COVID-19 causes an illness that feels like a serious flu. Protections to contain or slow the illness include, finding a vaccine, creating treatments, and surge health care capacity. She says simple actions to slow and contain it and the flu are handwashing with soap and water, stay home if you’re sick, avoid crowds, wear a mask if you’re coughing, clean shared touch points, like keyboards, doorknobs, etc.

A body found in deep brush north of Westport. The body has not been identified. The Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office reports the scattered remains were found over the weekend. The Sheriff’s office along with CSU, Chico Department of Anthropology Lab at the scene near mile marker 86 on Highway 1. The sheriff’s office says they will work fast to try to identify the remains.

PM NEWS

A man in Covelo has been arrested after a woman shows up in the ER with a gunshot wound. The woman told police she was laying down in her room listening to music and heard gunfire, she then realized she’d been hit on one of her fingers. Then Ira Reyes ran into her home, apologizing for hitting her with a bullet. The man reportedly thought he was shooting at someone else in the house. A search warrant served at Reyes home and a bullet hole was found. Round Valley Tribal Police ended up in a chase with the guy, who they say got out of his car and ran. He dropped a backpack that officers found a semi-automatic pistol inside. Reyes was found later and arrested for several crimes including, assault with a firearm, felon in possession of a firearm and shooting at an inhabited dwelling or vehicle. He’s held on $500,000.00 bail.

The city of Oakland and Alameda County taking extra steps to protect the public after the Grand Princess Cruise ship docked in the Port of Oakland. Some of the tested passengers had positive results for the novel coronavirus. Those on the ship will be quarantined and no City of Oakland employees or personnel were anywhere near them. Doctors, nurses and public health officials, emergency responders and community leaders including the city’s Mayor, and the Gov. spoke over the weekend about how important it is to keep surrounding communities protected. An 11 acre area was fenced off, there were temporary tents set up for cruise ship passengers to disembark into, meeting with medically trained federal personnel who wore personal protective gear for those interacting with passengers. And port workers handling the off-loading of passenger baggage. Those needing emergency care were being tended to if they had tested positive, or for other health issues too.

A series of aftershocks have rocked the Northern Calif. coast after a 5.8 earthquake over the weekend. The biggest of the aftershocks hit last night before midnight, measuring 4.9. Then several smaller quakes shook thru the morning hours today, the most recent, a 3.3.  So far we’ve not seen any damage or injury reports. The Mendocino fault is pretty active according to geologists at Humboldt State University. The larger earthquake was downgraded from a 5.9-magnitude last night.

This is an informational email with lots of great tips from a Virologist.

Below is the most detailed description of the coronavirus I’ve read. James Robb, MD UC San Diego, is a virologist who’s worked with this virus for almost 50 years. COVID-19 has an affinity for pulmonary receptors that is extraordinary.

Feel free to copy and send to family & friends.

Subject: What I am doing for the upcoming COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic

Dear Colleagues, as some of you may recall, when I was a professor of pathology at the University of California San Diego, I was one of the first molecular virologists in the world to work on coronaviruses (the 1970s). I was the first to demonstrate the number of genes the virus contained. Since then, I have kept up with the coronavirus field and its multiple clinical transfers into the human population (e.g., SARS, MERS), from different animal sources.

The current projections for its expansion in the US are only probable, due to continued insufficient worldwide data, but it is most likely to be widespread in the US by mid to late March and April.

Here is what I have done and the precautions that I take and will take. These are the same precautions I currently use during our influenza seasons, except for the mask and gloves.:

1) NO HANDSHAKING! Use a fist bump, slight bow, elbow bump, etc.

2) Use ONLY your knuckle to touch light switches. elevator buttons, etc.. Lift the gasoline dispenser with a paper towel or use a disposable glove.

3) Open doors with your closed fist or hip – do not grasp the handle with your hand, unless there is no other way to open the door. Especially important on bathroom and post office/commercial doors.

4) Use disinfectant wipes at the stores when they are available, including wiping the handle and child seat in grocery carts.

5) Wash your hands with soap for 10-20 seconds and/or use a greater than 60% alcohol-based hand sanitizer whenever you return home from ANY activity that involves locations where other people have been.

6) Keep a bottle of sanitizer available at each of your home’s entrances. AND in your car for use after getting gas or touching other contaminated objects when you can’t immediately wash your hands.

7) If possible, cough or sneeze into a disposable tissue and discard. Use your elbow only if you have to. The clothing on your elbow will contain infectious virus that can be passed on for up to a week or more!

What I have stocked in preparation for the pandemic spread to the US:

1) Latex or nitrile latex disposable gloves for use when going shopping, using the gasoline pump, and all other outside activity when you come in contact with contaminated areas.

Note: This virus is spread in large droplets by coughing and sneezing. This means that the air will not infect you! BUT all the surfaces where these droplets land are infectious for about a week on average – everything that is associated with infected people will be contaminated and potentially infectious. The virus is on surfaces and you will not be infected unless your unprotected face is directly coughed or sneezed upon. This virus only has cell receptors for lung cells (it only infects your lungs) The only way for the virus to infect you is through your nose or mouth via your hands or an infected cough or sneeze onto or into your nose or mouth.

2) Stock up now with disposable surgical masks and use them to prevent you from touching your nose and/or mouth (We touch our nose/mouth 90X/day without knowing it!). This is the only way this virus can infect you – it is lung-specific. The mask will not prevent the virus in a direct sneeze from getting into your nose or mouth – it is only to keep you from touching your nose or mouth.

3) Stock up now with hand sanitizers and latex/nitrile gloves (get the appropriate sizes for your family). The hand sanitizers must be alcohol-based and greater than 60% alcohol to be effective.

4) Stock up now with zinc lozenges. These lozenges have been proven to be effective in blocking coronavirus (and most other viruses) from multiplying in your throat and nasopharynx. Use as directed several times each day when you begin to feel ANY “cold-like” symptoms beginning. It is best to lie down and let the lozenge dissolve in the back of your throat and nasopharynx. Cold-Eeze lozenges is one brand available, but there are other brands available.

I, as many others do, hope that this pandemic will be reasonably contained, BUT I personally do not think it will be. Humans have never seen this snake-associated virus before and have no internal defense against it. Tremendous worldwide efforts are being made to understand the molecular and clinical virology of this virus. Unbelievable molecular knowledge about the genomics, structure, and virulence of this virus has already been achieved. BUT, there will be NO drugs or vaccines available this year to protect us or limit the infection within us. Only symptomatic support is available.

I hope these personal thoughts will be helpful during this potentially catastrophic pandemic. You are welcome to share this email. Good luck to all of us! Jim

James Robb, MD

The Mendocino County Assessor-County Clerk-Recorder has announced they’re still processing ballots from Super Tuesday. Katrina Bartolomie says as part of the official canvass, Mendocino County has 14,732 Vote By Mail ballots to process and 1,575 Conditional Provisional/Provisional ballots to review and process.  They will be updating the counts after today, one of their deadlines, then will give an update on Schools and Special District total breakdowns. For the 1st Supervisor District, they have 2,727 to process; the 2nd Supervisor District has 3,014; and the 4th Supervisor District has 3,730 ballots to count. They’ve got 28 days from Tuesday to finish their canvass, then they’ll have the official Statement of Vote, which breaks down results by precinct.

A cold case stays cold, but the CHP says they’re not giving up. The CHP Clear Lake office has updated the public on the murder of Patrick Michael Weber of Santa Clarita, more than a year after he was found dead in his van along Highway 20. Weber found in his van in February of 2019. He was found after reports of a car crash, another driver, seeing Weber’s van crashed on the side of the highway. Cops who responded were suspicious of the circumstances of the crash so they started investigating. And an autopsy showed the man died from a gunshot wound. There was also a bunch of marijuana found in the van and he was not legally licensed to transport it. His wife telling police he was a trimmer. A person of interest has been identified, but no word if that person was interviewed.

Lake County’s Registrar of Voters reports they’re still making their way through the ballots from the Super Tuesday vote, but they don’t have a preliminary vote count for the Lake County Superior Court judicial race. The two candidates, incumbent J. David Markham and his challenger Lisa Proffitt-O’Brien, are write-ins. As of yesterday there were nearly 10,000 ballots that have not been counted. That includes vote-by-mail, provisional and conditional ballots. Per state law today is the last day they can accept ballots there were mailed in and counted. Plus new voting equipment was used for the election. Lake Co News reports the interim Registrar Diane Fridley says the new equipment has some more steps which takes more time.

The Ukiah Municipal Airport paving project is starting in May, depending on weather. The Airport Manager Greg Owen reported to the City Council they hope to start May 4th. Cal Fire tankers and other aircraft typically used during fire season won’t be able to access the airport for several weeks. The project includes repaving a 75-foot section of the airport runway, plus they’re demolishing a taxiway and adding another one. At the time they decided to do the work the City Manager said if they didn’t get it done, there would no longer be a usable runway. And if there’s a fire they will be able to support helicopters during the work.

You maybe seeing some smoke above Low Gap Park, but it’s just a prescribed burn with Cal Fire. The Mendocino Unit of Cal Fire has put out a statement saying there would be a large burn west of the Ukiah Valley, it was for yesterday and today, each day starting at 10 am, and continuing thru 5 p.m. with visible smoke, flames and aircraft hovering. It’s all part of their Ukiah Fuels Reduction Project to thin the brush and hopefully reduce the amount of fires and their intensity if they do start. They say there are very tight restrictions for the burns and if there are windy conditions, or other unsafe burn conditions, they will cancel.

A major employer in Sonoma County says they’re closing indefinitely due to the coronavirus. It’s the first major employer with the announcement after a second person in the County was diagnosed with the virus. This person became sick a day after an elderly man in Placer County died after becoming seriously ill with the coronavirus. The Gov. Gavin Newsom also declared a state of emergency after the death. There’s a local public health emergency in Sonoma County and an investigation of a Sonoma County Airport Express shuttle bus, both of the residents who got sick with the virus were on. They were in a group of people from the Grand Princess cruise from San Francisco to Mexico who hopped on the shuttle after disembarking. An employee at Keysight was under self-quarantine after developing flu-like symptoms and being tested for the virus. A company spokesperson says other employees will work from home until they find out if the single employee indeed has the illness.

The state Dept. of Managed Health Care and all commercial and Medi-Cal health plans the state regulates are being ordered to provide all medically necessary screening and testing for coronavirus for free. It also includes a waiver for cost-sharing for emergency room, urgent care or provider office visits if it’s about the virus.  The Gov. says residents shouldn’t have to be afraid they’ll get stuck with a big medical bill because they’re being tested for the virus. So those who show symptoms and fit the testing requirements will get the test at no cost. Also the California Department of Insurance issued a similar directive for free medically necessary testing for 2 million more Californians.  As of yesterday there were 60 positive cases, 1 death. 9,400 Californians are self monitoring after returning from travel through San Francisco Airport or LAX.

The City of Clearlake says it’ll sue Lake County if the County doesn’t hop on board and have more than 1,000 tax-defaulted properties up for auction by November. The Record Bee reports the city sent a letter to the Board of Supervisors and to the Treasurer- Tax Collector Barbara Ringen by the Clearlake City Attorney Ryan Jones regarding the 1,121 properties in Clearlake, some of them defaulted for nearly a decade. The letter says it’s statutorily required for a tax auction at least once this year, before Halloween. The attorney says if the County doesn’t meet the City’s demand, they will take legal action to compel the Tax Collector to do her duty. Last week the Tax Collector’s office and the board said there would be 217 properties in Lake County, only 118 of which are in Clearlake, up for tax auction beginning in late May.

A call for entries by the Middletown Art Center for its yearly EcoArts Sculpture Walk. The walk at the Middletown Trailside Park for the 15th year. But only the second exhibit since the park reopened after the Valley Fire. It’s for artists who are interested in the recovery of ecosystems using their work and or having something to do with restoration. Artists should use the materials of the park and be in the spirit of the environment of south Lake County. You’ve got to submit by March 30th and be ready to install your work by May 12th to the 29th.

Applications can be downloaded at middletownartcenter.org/artists. For questions email middletownartcenter@gmail.com.

It’s a resounding yes for Adventist Health to start managing Mendocino Coast District Hospital. In election returns voters gave Measure C 90% yes. The initiative asked voters if the hospital should allow Adventist, or its subsidiary, Stone Point Health to take over operations for up to 30 years. A majority vote of more than 50 percent was needed for the measure to pass. The hospital’s interim CEO thanked voters Wednesday, in an email to the community, he thanked all who made access to healthcare services a high priority. He says now Adventist Health will permit the deployment of proven preventative health programs within our community and create an attractive arrangement for more physicians to practice locally. The hospital board also voted unanimously to close the hospital’s obstetrics department last week and agreed on a “stabilize and transfer” protocol for expectant mothers starting at the end of March.

A resident in Del Norte County is showing symptoms of coronavirus. The Del Norte County Public Health and Del Norte County Office of Emergency Services are teaming up for the resident to get tested, following the guidelines set out by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention. The patient took themselves to a local healthcare facility then contact testing was initiated. That to see who this patient had been in contact with the previous two weeks. Exposed contacts are being quarantined at home and monitored for symptoms. They warn this is only a presumed case until it’s confirmed with the lab test. This person is being treated in a controlled environment, the risk to the public is low. Symptoms can be mild to severe with fever, cough, and shortness of breath. Older residents and individuals with underlying medical conditions are particularly vulnerable to COVID-19.

A bunch of people on a cruise ship off the coast of California are being told to hunker down in their cabins until test results come back to see if the coronavirus is also aboard with more than 3,500 people. There was a military helicopter lowering tests to the Grand Princess by rope, then plucked them back up later for analysis. Princess Cruises reported 45 people were tested after a passenger on the same ship but a different cruise died of the coronavirus and at least four others got sick.  The virus also had another Princess cruise ship under quarantine for two weeks. The Diamond Princess, in Yokohama, Japan, last month. On that cruise, 700 of 3,700 people aboard were infected with the virus. 14 people have died from the virus in the U.S. all but the one here in calif were in Washington state.

A man whose DNA showed up as being the Golden State Killer and East Side Rapist is going to plead guilty so he doesn’t have a death penalty trial. Court papers and a letter from Joseph James DeAngelo’s lawyers to the victim’s families says they want to avoid a long and costly trial. He’s accused of more than a dozen murders over more than ten years in six counties in Calif. And for 13 more counts of kidnapping and robbery. There were more he was accused of too in the 1970s and 80s but the statute of limitations has expired so he can’t be tried for those. The letter sent by the public defenders office said they want to reach a resolution that satisfies all parties.

Bond measures to get voters in Ukiah to help pay for upgrades to schools still look to be failing. The Daily Journal reports Measure A which needed 55 percent to pass looks to be failing with only about 51 percent approving and 48 giving it a no vote. But the school superintendent says they’re still hopeful as there are still votes to be counted. The money would be used for infrastructure repairs and replacing portable classrooms with permanent ones. Their laboratories also need updating. They were looking to raise $75 million for old roofs, plumbing and sewer, inadequate electrical, heating, ventilation, and air conditioning, to upgrade physical education facilities for year-round use by the school and community and bolster outdated security and emergency communications systems, including security fencing.

Serious crime down in Clearlake for the second year in a row. Lake Co News reports the latest report from the police chief brags the lowest property crime numbers in 35 years. Police Chief Andrew White delivered the yearly department report at the Feb. 20th Clearlake City Council meeting. The Chief says their best accomplishment was becoming a public safety answering point which means they get money from the state for a new 911 system. It’s connected to Mendocino and Lake counties. They also got technology upgrades including new Tasers, mapping, computers and major radio updates. He reports 390 incidents, up 2 percent, a ten percent drop in arrests though.

The School Measure which had some confused because it’s not a housing tax bill, but will give money to schools, Proposition 13, failed. Things could turn around of course in the next month with mail in ballots still trickling in, but the $15 billion school bond measure is behind with only 44 percent of the vote in Wednesday election returns. A political strategist working with Governor Newsom who’s supporting the measure says early votes usually skew conservative and millions of ballots have still not been counted. Plus more liberal or progressive voters tend to back more school funding.

Lots of last minute changes in the Calif. election brought more voters out, but there were reported computer glitches, tons of long lines and short staffing in some polling places. Los Angeles County had a new $300 million voting system, and many of the devices didn’t work. There were also reports that there were not enough check in machines or people working at polling stations, plus some folks had to wait in line up to two hours. Senator Bernie Sanders’ presidential campaign has filed a complaint and a county supervisor is demanding an investigation. Also part of Tuesday the state voter database wasn’t working so 15 counties weren’t able to print out labels, register voters or see if some voters already cast ballots.

Measure G in Willits, the bond initiative to bring money in for repairs has failed. It was pretty close though it didn’t get the needed 55 percent of the vote on Super Tuesday. Mendocino County unofficial results from yesterday show two other school measures in Ukiah and Fort Bragg also did not receive the needed votes to pass. But the County passed a bond measure for the School District with 66.35 percent. Willits bond measure only got 52%, just shy of a win. Only a 28% voter turnout too.

The Gov. has declared a state of emergency due to the coronavirus. This will help bring more resources into the state to fight the spread of the disease. The Gov. says its to help identify cases quicker and slow its spread. It came after a patient in Placer County died from the illness yesterday. Public Health officials there say it was an elderly person who was on a Princess cruise ship Feb. 11-21 from San Francisco to Mexico. They also had other medical conditions. Anyone in contact with that patient was quarantined for more evaluation.

A man in Covelo’s been arrested for possessing weapons including a loaded pistol. The Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office got a call to back up the Round Valley Tribal Police Department after a routine patrol finds a man in a car parked in the middle of the road facing the wrong direction. There they found Luis John Oliver, asleep. There was a pistol on the front passenger seat so the man was awakened and detained. When deputies arrived they found a large capacity drum style magazine in the firearm which had a bunch of 9mm live cartridges. They found a lot more ammo and meth in the car, so the guy was booked into jail on multiple state and federal charges including, felon in possession of firearm, possession of large capacity magazine, possession of ammunition by prohibited person and possession of controlled substance while armed with firearm.

The Sheriff along with the County’s Interim Health Officer are having a joint press conference this morning on the coronavirus. Sheriff Matt Kendall and Interim Health Officer Noemi Mimi Doohan at the County Administration Center at 9 am to update the community on local preparedness and response. They say there’s been a ton of misinformation from well-meaning individuals, but instead to get the facts from them, official channels. They’re also live streaming on the County’s Facebook page and YouTube Channel www.youtube.com/MendocinoCountyVideo and will be shared on this Facebook page as well.

It was less than a half hour to convict a man from Boise for some crimes in Mendocino County. The DA’s office reports the jury took twenty minutes to convict Hyrum William Anderson for resisting and delaying a peace officer and refusing to provide identification upon lawful demand of a peace officer, the two both misdemeanors. The man has been ordered to come back to Ukiah for sentencing March 26th.

Congressman John Garamendi has introduced the FEMA Disaster Preparedness Improvement Act. The senior member of the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure says the bill will help increase FEMA support for disaster preparedness and emergency response to California and other states. Congressman Mike Thompson is his cosponsor. They say the bill would increase the federal cost share from 50-75%, instead to 85%, have special flood hazard zones, exempt the time it takes for complete environmental reviews and has the Government Accountability Office report challenges to congress if there are issues with FEMA.

A man in Lake County has pleaded no contest, basically not admitting or denying he killed his father. Alan Ashmore charged with murder and attempted murder for the death of his dad, Douglas Ashmore, and the attempted murder of Richard Braden. Ashmore also pleaded to an attempted first degree murder of a California Highway Patrol Officer for a October, 2017 incident in Clearlake Oaks. He first pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity. He also was accused of shooting a woman in the foot, she escaped and when his dad intervened, he killed him. Then he got a gun from his dad’s car, and fired at several houses and cars, including shooting at Braden in a vehicle on the street.

It looks like a runoff election for First District Supervisor candidates Glenn McGourty and Jon Kennedy. Each of the two did not receive more than 50% of the majority, so there has to be a runoff in November, in the General Election. Incumbent Carre Brown is retiring from the seat and four people are running. Besides McGourty and Kennedy, there was James Green and John Sakowicz. McGourty is the UC Farm Advisor for Mendocino County and Kennedy has had various jobs including being a firefighter and running a nonprofit helping Mendocino County fire survivors rebuild their homes.

The 2nd District Supervisor seat will head to a runoff in November. Mo Mulheren and Mari Rodin running for the seat John McCowen is vacating. Mulheren had about 42% of the vote and Rodin had 32.5%. The seat represents the city of Ukiah.  Mulheren is a small business owner in Ukiah on the City Council. And Rodin, a former City Council member runs a company who finds grants for local nonprofits and public agencies.

Supervisor Dan Gjerde is holding on to his seat in the 4th District with 58% over Fort Bragg Councilmember Lindy Peters who garnered 42% of the total vote.

It looks like a majority win for a ballot measure to bring in a tax from campgrounds and RV sites. The elections office reported last night the Mendocino County Transient Occupancy Tax, Measure D, had nearly 54% of the vote. It had to have a majority to pass. It aims to bring in $1 million a year from visitors to camp sites, tent sites, RV sites and private campgrounds in Mendocino County. Measure E which was also on the ballot to fund fire agencies, also passing, with 65% of the vote. It would give 75% of the money brought in to all fire agencies in the County, then the remaining 25 percent on a recommendation by fire chiefs.

School funding may be on hold though if Measure A was the only way, as the initiative looked to be failing in early vote counting. The Mendocino County Elections Office reported last night, the ballot measure did not get enough support. It was looking to raise as much as $75 million in funding to pay for upgrades to Ukiah schools. The Measure needed 55 percent to pass, and after the polls closed, it was a little short of that at 51.6 percent. It could change though with more ballots trickling in this week. The Ukiah Unified School District had said the money would be used for repairs and updates for items like deteriorating roofs, old plumbing and sewer systems, and inadequate electrical and ventilation systems. They also wanted to update classrooms and labs and replace old portable classrooms with permanent ones instead.

The Ukiah City Council is considering an “urgency ordinance” because of the homeless encampments near the airport. For their meeting tonight, the Assistant City Attorney explains the ordinance would designate an area across from the northern and southern ends of the runway at the Ukiah Municipal Airport designated as Runway Safety Areas. In notes to the Council, he says they would be kept vacant for public safety and to ensure safe operation of the airport. And anyone violating the ordinance could get a misdemeanor citation unless they had “written authorization from the Airport Manager or the City Manager.” The Daily Journal reports there have also been businesses denied permits in these same areas for the same safety reasons regarding congregating where a plane could land.

About half of the precincts in Lake County have reported results in Super Tuesday races. The Lake County Registrar of Voters reported before midnight, for District 5 Supervisor Jessica Pyska got 45.60% and Bill Kerney with 36%, the third in line, Kevin Ahahanian with only 1.5%. In District 4, Tina Scott with a majority, winning 60% to Chris Almind’s 40%. District 1 was not a problem to retain for Moke Simon, who garnered 63% of the vote against Julia Mary Bono who got 37%. Proposition 13 in Lake County got a No vote, the Yuba Community College District Measure, also a No.

Lake County voters chose Donald Trump overwhelmingly for President again, with 95% of registered Republicans checking him off, then it was Michael Bloomberg, Bernie Sanders and Joe Biden. In Mendocino County, it was Sanders with 43%, Biden with 15% and Elizabeth Warren with 13.5%, President Trump getting 92% of Republican votes.

More info on a person sick with the coronavirus in Sonoma County. The patient at a local hospital was on a Princess Cruise line from San Francisco to Mexico in February, now the second ship owned by Princess that’s been connected to confirmed cases of the illness.  The Sonoma County Health Officer is reportedly trying to find anyone else who came into contact with this person. They were on the cruise from Feb. 11th to the 21st. Then hopped a shuttle from the port to the Sonoma Airport. The county health department is looking for anyone who may have been on that shuttle. This is the second confirmed case of coronavirus being treated at a county hospital, both recent Princess Cruises ship passengers.

A couple of men arrested for making honey oil are going to prison. Grant Anderson and Adam Bushaw, both of Los Angeles, convicted by plea last November. Bushaw telling police he didn’t think to get a permit to extract the oil because he first needed money to start his burgeoning business, and because everyone else is involved in the marijuana business in Mendocino County. Then yesterday a judge denied their requests for probation and hgave them each five years behind bars. But they’ll only serve six months and will then be released for four years of mandatory supervision. The DA tried getting 84 months, 2 years behind bars and the rest under supervision.

Looks like a win for a couple of Lake County Supervisor incumbents. Well after midnight, results in the Super Tuesday race showed first-term incumbents Moke Simon and Tina Scott winning in Districts 1 and 4 respectively. In District 5, Jessica Pyska won the most votes, but fell short of a majority for Rob Brown’s seat, he’s retiring. So it looks like Pyska will go up against retired pharmacist Bill Kearney of Kelseyville, she with 46% of the vote and he with 21%.

Measure C for the Woodland Community College, it’s a no vote to bring in some bond money.

District 4 Assemblymember incumbent Democrat Cecilia Aguiar-Curry got only a slight majority across her district, with 55 percent, Republican Matthew Nelson got about 35 percent, so Aguiar-Curry and Nelson will face off in November.

Democratic Congressmembers John Garamendi and Mike Thompson will have to fight for their seats. Garamendi got 55.7 percent and Republican Tamika Hamilton received 29.6 percent, so the two will face off in the General in November. Thompson who got almost 66% has to face Republican Scott Giblin who won 23 percent in his primary. They face off in November too.

Incumbent 2nd District Congressman Jared Huffman will face Dale Mensing of Redway  in November.

Jim Wood, the incumbent in the California Assembly will face challenger Charlotte Svolos from Del Norte.

Bond money to fund public schools looks to be losing, Prop 13, getting 56% for a no vote in California, against 41% of yes votes.

Due to the of the coronavirus, there are reported shortages of respirator face masks for medical professionals, so the California Department of Public Health is stepping in, getting approval from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health to get a hold of some of their emergency reserves. Apparently there are 21 million masks available, some past their use by dates, but they’ve been kept in climate control so they are still effective. They are only approved for certain limited, low-risk circumstances so doctors, nurses and other hospital and medical personnel can still use them when they’re around confirmed COVID-19 patients and other high-risk infectious diseases. As of yesterday, Calif. had
43 positive tests.

The Golden State Killer suspect is still being investigated, and more crimes could be tied to the alleged serial killer and East Area Rapist. Five new DNA samples are being taken from suspect Joseph James DeAngelo connected to a string of rapes in seven counties in Calif. if prosecutors get their way. There’s a hearing in the case next week before the preliminary hearing set for May 12th which itself could last up to 10 weeks and see 150 witnesses. The prosecution and defense arguing over the new DNA sample request for swabs from DeAngelo for possibly more criminal counts. His lawyers say the majority of the 26 murder and rape charges against him should be dismissed because state law doesn’t allow prosecutors in Sacramento to charge for crimes outside their jurisdiction.

One of the two people who had the coronavirus in Northern Calif has died. The Press Democrat reports it was an elderly person who got the virus on a Princess cruise ship. Now the cruise line is being investigated by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention due to a “small cluster” of coronavirus patients. Another passenger is also from Northern Calif and is a patient in Sonoma County. The pair were reportedly exposed to the disease while on the Grand Princess cruise from San Francisco to Mexico Feb. 11th to the 21st. More than fifty people have become ill with coronavirus in Calif. including many who got it from person to person contact.

At the latest Lake County Board of Supervisors meeting they considered the Vision 2028 priorities again which the board adopted in April 2018.  Chairman Moke Simon, who by the way is retaining his seat after Super Tuesday, easily winning his seat again spoke up about the Vision… Simon says cleaning up neighborhoods through targeted Code Enforcement is a pillar of their Economic Development strategy. He mentioned they applied for Cannabis grant funds to figure out how to use the tax money they receive to better serve communities. At the meeting yesterday Board members also decided to deny an appeal to not allow a Grocery Outlet store in Middletown. The board finding it to be a major step for economic growth. They also covered public safety as part of the Vision 2028 plan.

PG&E says they’re sending out postcards to several thousand customers across the state for updated contact information as they expect a possible early fire season. The giant utility asking their more than 200,000 customers throughout the state to update your phone number, email address and other info for future power shutoffs. You’re only getting one of the postcards if you’re info isn’t complete or they have no contact information on file. This after a dry January and February, February one of the driest in state history. You can also visit PG&E’s website or call them to update your contact info too.

Update in Lake County on the Coronavirus. The Lake County Public Health Department hosted with Dr. Gary Pace. The meeting at the Grace Evangelical Free Church last night in Kelseyville. There was also a live stream of the event where they gave an overview of preparations they’re taking and the contacts they’ve been keeping in touch with. Health professionals from Sutter Lakeside hospital, EMS staff, someone from the Lake County Office of Education and the Sheriff Brian Martin were all in attendance. Of the 100 detected cases in the country, there have been six deaths. 43 people in Calif have tested positive. Pace says those tested are showing strong symptoms and were very sick and were in contact with someone from China or elsewhere that the infection had spread. He says the risk is very low locally.

In Mendocino County, the health dept. reports also keeping a close eye on the possible spread of the virus. The Coronavirus presents like the common cold, but can also cause illness like severe flu. Most people get it in its mild form. The County warning folks to protect themselves like they would from the spread of the flu, stay home from work or school if you feel sick or have flu-like symptoms including a fever and respiratory symptoms, have routine medicine handy, a thermometer to monitor your temperature in case you develop a fever, have extra nonperishable food at home, have support if you have to stay home, wash your hands regularly before and after being in public, don’t touch your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands and if you feel sick, call your doctor.

For general health related questions or other concerns during business hours, please call Mendocino County’s Call Center at (707) 234-6052.

Three more homes moved in to by Lake County families thanks to Habitat for Humanity. The three families in Cobb after the Valley Fire without homes. The families thanking Habitat for their housing which is provided for low income families who work with them to own a home.

New action in Calif. to avoid a further spread of the coronavirus. The Gov. Gavin Newsom asking the Legislature to set aside as much as $20 million out of the state’s Disaster Response Emergency Operations Account. The Gov. also activated the State Operations Center to the second-highest level to support state, federal and local emergency managers, public health officials and first responders. The Center will be at the ready for operational and other support to the California Department of Public Health’s Medical and Health Coordination Center. The state has also received more test kits. There are nearly a dozen public health labs set up too which have tests from the CDC. State officials say positive tests are being reported but they’re taking action quickly for early detection.

PG&E attorneys say they may not be able to get several hundred more tree trimmers hired as the federal judge ordered to avoid more wildfires. The judge in the utility company’s criminal case after natural gas lines blew up in San Bruno ordered the company to hire 1,100 more tree trimmers so trees don’t fall on power lines and start fires. But lawyers for PG&E have filed papers saying they already have 5,500 tree trimmers and are training about 2,800 more next year. But some of them are set to replace contractors paid a premium because they’re from out of state.

For the first time ever, the California Highway Patrol has appointed a female African American deputy commissioner. Amanda Ray has worked for the agency 30 years this month. Deputy Commissioner Ray says she’s grateful to serve with amazing women and men dedicated to the highest level of Safety, Service, and Security. She’ll head daily operations. The Gov. commented on the appointment and the timing of it landing on both Black History Month and Women’s History Month in March.

Thousands of fire responders worked the Mendocino Complex Fire, but one in particular will be remembered posthumously with a sculpture. Battallion Chief Matthew Burchett of Utah was killed in the Ranch Fire two years ago. A doctor from Adventist Health reportedly asked artist and sculptor Mark Zjawinski of San Francisco to create a remembrance of Burchett. So a bronze bust was created. Retired Ukiah Fire Chief Kevin Jennings helped with details of the uniform and gear. Finishing touches are being made on the sculpture, then it will be installed in front of the hospital in Ukiah.

Police in Ukiah say three explosives have been found by Pear Tree Shopping Center. Cops say a citizen saw the devices by a trash dumpster behind Rod’s Shoes between the Shopping Center and Home Depot. The man who saw the devices walked to the police station yesterday morning after spotting them. Police and the Sonoma County Sheriff’s Office bomb squad were on the scene to inspect and take away the pipe bomb and two, homemade IEDs (improvised explosive devices). They say they have no idea what the motive was and who left them. Cops say there was no threat to the public the condition the devices were left in.

The election is on and California may make a mark in the Democratic presidential primary for the first time in years due to the earlier primary. It’s been in June and was moved up to March, on Super Tuesday, joining Alabama, Arkansas, Colorado, Maine, Massachusetts, Minnesota, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, and Virginia. But California has the most delegates of them all with 415. Now that Mayor Pete Buttigieg, Tom Steyer and Sen. Amy Klobuchar dropped out of the race, it’s mostly between former VP Joe Biden and Sen. Bernie Sanders. Polls are open until 8 p.m. And you can register to vote today due to a new state law. If you haven’t mailed in your ballot, you can still do that as long as it gets to the county elections office by Friday.

PG&E says they’re doing a test run using the Humboldt Bay Generating Station in its  ‘island” mode so major parts of the county can stay powered on during “Public Safety Power Shutoff” events. Kym Kemp reports “islanding” means to use the plant for powering up an area that’s disconnected from the grid. PG&E says they got permits to test out the “islanding” idea this summer, which could help with intentional power downs by the utility company in the future.

PM NEWS

Long lines may be in store for those waiting until after to work to vote in California. Officials say you can vote after 8 and to be patient if there are long lines at your polling station this “Super Tuesday”. Only a small amount of the more than 20.5 million registered voters in the state had turned in their mail in ballots in early voting. Elections officials were expecting way more ballots to get there today because some voters were waiting to see the results of other state primaries before casting their ballots. Mike Bloomberg and Tom Steyer were advertising all over the place in Calif, Steyer has since dropped out as has Mayor Pete Buttigieg and Senator Amy Klobachar. Sens. Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren and former Vice President Joe Biden are still in it to win the 415 pledged Democratic party delegates in Calif.

The City of Willits has an agreement with the Little Lake Fire Protection District so the fire district will get a quarter of the revenue that’s brought in from Measure I, the City’s voter-approved Cannabis Industry Tax. So far they’ve pulled in just over $100,000 before expenses. So it’s not yet been calculated what the fire department will get exactly. The City Manager also says the money will be retroactive and based on the total tax since the Measure went into effect. The mayor also chimed in saying, the fire department is very important, and they have an obligation to help fund the needed service.

A series of earthquakes have rattled the Redwood Valley area. Cal Tech reports 5 temblors hit this morning between 10:12 a.m. and 10:27 a.m. At least three were big enough that they could have been felt by residents or others in the area and a fourth one might have only been felt by the most sensitive. The biggest was 3.9 on the scale. Some of them said to have hit by the Coyote Valley Reservation. The smallest one was a 1.9 quake, that one at 10:26. There were no reports of any damage or injuries. They were reported about 3.7 miles deep.