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A woman from Willits has been arrested after a traffic stop in Ukiah. Deputies say Brittney Bouley was the owner of the car but was not the driver. She approached on foot to check on the driver and was arrested because she had a warrant for her arrest. She was being held on $25,000.00 bail.

The Veterans Stand Down event is being held in Lake County. Vet Connect are hosting the yearly event so that local vets and active military personnel who are homeless, experiencing uncertain housing or are vulnerable in other ways get the help they need. The event today from 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. at the Lake County Fairgrounds. Veterans need to show their ID cards and Lake Transit is offering veterans free rides to the Stand Down. Lunch is also being served by Vet Connect volunteers. The resources being offered include disability services, DMV, housing, homeless assistance, emergency preparedness, substance abuse counseling services, employment help and child support assistance.

A man from Nice has been arrested after a routine patrol turned up a load of crimes. Deputies say they tried to stop the car for code violations September 12th, and say the driver pulled into
dirt turn out and got out of the car. Deputies identified him as Thomas Stricklin who did not have a valid driver license and his registration was expired. Inside the car was suspected methamphetamine, marijuana and a large amount of cash. They say he was probably going to try to sell the drugs, so they towed his car, and arrested him. He’s charged with various crimes, including Felony – Possession and Transportation of Controlled Substance for Sale, Misdemeanor – Possession of Marijuana for Sale and Felony – Possession and Transportation of Controlled Substance. He’s held on $25,000 bail.

A sex offender in Ukiah has been arrested for not registering and violating his parole. Deputies arrested 41-year-old Kenneth Dewitt after a call about illegal camping in a motor home. Deputies say they had to leave because they got another call for service, at the same time dispatch informed Dewitt was a sex registrant who had not followed the law and registered where he was. They found him later, believing he did not meet the deadline for his annual registration and also a 30-day registration as a transient. He was also on parole so he was arrested and held without bail for being a Sex Offender who Failed To Register, Sex Offender Failed To Register Transient and for violating his parole.

A group of wineries all involved in one organization; WineAmerica have released a new study on the industry that says it will bring in over $276 billion to the American economy this year. The new study by an economic research firm and co-sponsored by WineAmerica was touted by Congressman Mike Thompson along with Congressman Dan Newhouse of Washington. The two are Co-chairs of the Congressional Wine Caucus. The study also says the industry has 1.84 million jobs and pays over $90 billion dollars in wages. The study shows wine is produced in all 50 states. Thompson says it also provides unique tourism opportunities and contributes to local economies.

Intro: California needs tens of thousands of workers over six years to continue building a broadband network that brings high-speed internet to underserved areas. The federal government is awarding almost 6 million dollars to the Communications Workers of America to supercharge their workforce training program. Frank Arce with the C-W-A says the union is partnering with the Chabot-Las Positas (shuh-BOW las poe-ZEE-tus) Community College District in the Bay Area to expand their apprenticeship program.

 :09  "We're planning on focusing on underserved communities, really making sure it's a locally based workforce, people of color, women, veterans, and young people. "

Tag: The plan is to open three more paid apprenticeship training programs over the next few years in the Fresno, Chico and L-A areas. The state is set to allocate more than 5 billion dollars to extend high speed internet in rural areas. And the Infrastructure Act will send hundreds of millions in federal funds to bolster the effort.


Second Cut: Arce says the grant also will allow C-W-A to partner with employers to lift up working families.

 :12  "It’s a great opportunity for people to get some skills and set themselves into a solid middle-class job. We're taking advantage of this opportunity that we're building our infrastructure in the country to see if we can get some Californians out to work."

Tag: Arce says in the past, unscrupulous subcontractors working for telecom companies have cut corners and treated workers poorly. But he adds, this publicly funded program will raise the standards to require high-quality materials, workmanship and employee benefits.

That crazy heatwave a couple of weeks ago made history, as we know. Ukiah was 117 one day, an all-time high. Plus, it stayed over 100 degrees for days on end, it seemed in inland Mendocino County. The Mendocino County Public Health Office is warning it could happen again. Mendocino Voice reports Social Services staff made hundreds of calls to make sure those without shelter, those getting in-home support, at-risk youth, foster families, and PG&E medical baseline customers were contacted. Public Health told the news site they were concerned mostly about lower-income families and individuals and finding ways to stay in touch with them. There were cooling stations during the hottest hours of the day but only if there are more than 3 days above 100. The news site also reports the state is coming up with new protocols for these heatwaves, which are sure to continue.

That woman from Redding who faked her own kidnapping is going to prison for 18 months. Now that the sentencing occurred video has been released of Sherri Papini and her husband with detectives at the Shasta County Sheriff’s Office from Aug. of 2020 when she was found to be lying. Detectives told Papini who supposed kidnappers, 2 Hispanic women would not be found because she was actually with her ex-boyfriend who she asked to come get her in Redding and bring her to his home in Costa Mesa. And that he told detectives was the real story. After that her husband left the room. He filed for divorce this fall and has sole custody of their kids. Papini was charged with lying to the FBI and fraud.

The massive Mosquito Fire is still burning, but the rain that came down has helped build more containment. More residents have also been allowed to come home after the fire burned over 76,400 acres. There was a risk of flash flooding early this week though — over the burn scar. The fire is 49% contained with acreage mostly holding. At one time over 11,000 residents were evacuated. There are still several thousand firefighters on the scene putting out hot spots on the fire which started two weeks ago. There is warmer weather coming today, so Cal Fire reports being cautious. The Mosquito is California’s largest fire of 2022 so far. Nearly 80 homes have been destroyed and 13 others were damaged.

A man riding his bike on Main Street in Willits had major injuries after an accident. Police say the man was headed south, then snaked quickly across the street getting clipped by a car. He was thrown from the bike and hit his head on the ground, sustaining major head injuries. The bicyclist is still in a coma at a hospital in Santa Rosa. At the time kids were going to school so the street was pretty busy. Baechtel Grove Middle School posted on social media that some students saw the accident happen and they were providing counselors for any student in need. Police said the man was known to cruise around town on his bike and they had no permanent address for him.

The Lake County Board of Supervisors has released their response to the latest Civil Grand Jury Report saying they didn’t agree with all of the recommendations, but they valued the work done. The report on the Mt. Konocti Fire Tower which needs work. With that the Board said they may re-lease it or acquire it from Cal Fire if the state won’t fix it. They said they may make it a fixture in the park for its historic value and since the state has been putting billions of dollars into fire work, staffing the tower is not that expensive. There were also many other sections of the report on cannabis income, managing feral cats, and buying a mobile van for animal shelter staff for vaccination and sterilizations. The report also covered local disaster agencies which the Board of Supervisors also didn’t entirely agree on how to work within the requested changes.

The Federal Government’s stimulus after the start of the pandemic will be used to build a sustainable fuel processing facility for the Scotts Valley Band of Pomo Indians. The Department of Commerce is distributing $5 million from the American Rescue Plan to the Scotts Valley Band of Pomos in Kelseyville to help the tribe with renewable energy through the American Rescue Plan’s Indigenous Communities program. The money to pay for site work and buying equipment for a woody biomass processing facility. The work to bring the community firewood, pellet-based fuels, and other bioenergy products. The governor says the investment will help the tribe bolster their community’s economic and climate resilience.

An investigation is being requested in Lucerne into the Elijah House. The Record Bee reports the shelter which had been operating out of the old Juvenile Hall had residents from various Northern California counties including Mendocino cleaning highways as part of their Back 2 Work Program for transitional residents from local shelters. The program was apparently in partnership with Caltrans and the Butte County Office of Education. But Lake County was not listed as being part of the program, even though Elijah House workers were transported from Lakeport and Ukiah to work on the highways. The Lucerne Area Townhall is asking their chairman to file an official complaint with the Civil Grand Jury about this, the official paperwork on the Elijah House nonprofit being out of date and reports they may have mistreated crew members, which included claims of sexual harassment and wages withheld.

The man suspected in the disappearance of a woman from Round Valley is out of prison, but in a local jail. Negie Fallis, is believed by Khadijah Britton’s family and others, to be involved in her disappearance in February of 2018. He’s in Mendocino County jail, and out of federal prison after over two years for possession of a firearm by a felon. Fallis was booked into jail back in 2018 after being seen holding a gun to Britton and forcing her into a car. Charges against him back then included kidnapping, assault with a deadly weapon, corporal injury to a spouse, and burglary. But the charges were dismissed. He’s been in and out prison since. Now he’s accused of violating his Post Release Custody Supervision.

Some folks in Santa Rosa and beyond felt some shaking. A magnitude 4.4 earthquake hit after 6:30 last night and not too far behind was a 3.9. The U.S. Geological Survey reported the 4.4 at 6:39 p.m. about 2.4 miles north-northeast of Santa Rosa and the 3.9 at 6:40 p.m. about 2.3 miles north of Santa Rosa. Geologists say the temblors hit on the Rodgers Creek Fault, which has the potential for an even stronger quake. The last bigger earthquakes on the fault were back in 1969 and were 5.6 and magnitude 5.7 near Santa Rosa. No injuries or damage was reported.

They’re still looking for a permanent police chief in Ukiah after the last one was fired. So the City Council has voted to hire an executive placement firm to find Chief Noble Waidelich’s replacement. This will be the fourth new chief in as many years. 3 head-hunting firms gave proposals to the city. City staff and an ad-hoc committee chose Mosaic Public Partners out of Placer County. The cost would be $38,000 and needs to be added to the budget. The city never told us why Waidelich was fired after first being placed on administrative leave for an ongoing criminal investigation. The city manager at the time of his firing said he was no longer a fit. The Sonoma County Sheriff’s Office is investigating the former chief.

The Governor has announced the state’s launched a new website to help those who need abortions. Abortion.ca.gov is accessible for those who need to find an abortion provider and also gives information on abortion rights, different types of abortions, paying for the procedure, and more. It includes info for California residents and non-residents dealing with restrictions or outright bans like in Texas, Tennessee and Alabama. The site is in English and Spanish, and the state says it will also be translated into other languages too. The site is up a day after South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham introduced a national ban on abortions after 15 weeks of conception.

Three administrative sites on the Mendocino National Forest are being temporarily closed for hazardous material cleanup. It’s happening through the end of the month at the High Glade lookout, Keller Place and Beaver Glade fire station. The closures are to protect the public and contractors during the work. They’re asking the public to avoid the cleanup operations and if you come upon any heavy equipment on forest roads to be cautious. The 2018 Ranch Fire burned the High Glade lookout area. The Beaver Glade fire station and historic Keller Place cabin burned in the 2020 August Complex.

It’s been almost 14 years, but the Kelseyville Unified School District superintendent is leaving. Dr. Dave McQueen has announced he’s retiring next year. That will be after the 2022-23 school year, next June. The Kelseyville Unified School District Board of Trustees is looking for qualified applicants to take over next July. McQueen says he’s spent his entire career and lifetime in the district. And that all of his kids have graduated from Kelseyville High. The district will post the superintendent’s position this week with the deadline for applications as Oct. 12th.

An update is to be delivered to the Clearlake City Council on the recreation center feasibility study. The council’s also looking at a mutual aid agreement with several other cities in Lake and Mendocino counties tomorrow night. The second phase of the Recreation Center Feasibility Study will be high up on the agenda, but the mutual aid agreement for Clearlake, Lakeport, Fort Bragg, Point Arena, Ukiah and Willits would mean the cities and two counties would meet regularly. There, they would discuss issues, share ideas and give support with the City of Ukiah leading. At the beginning of the meeting the council is meeting some dogs up for adoption from the city shelter and read a proclamation declaring Sept. 23rd as Native American Day.

Public libraries across the state will be getting a shot in the arm after the Governor announced millions in grants for the institutions. Over a quarter billion dollars will be distributed to libraries in 172 cities in 34 counties, including Lake County. The $254 million is part of the first round of the Building Forward Library Improvement Grant Program. It includes nearly $1,100,000 for Lake County’s four libraries. In Lakeport, Middletown, The Redbud Library and the Upper Lake Library, with the most for Lakeport. Newsom says the libraries across Calif. are the “hearts of communities across the state and our hubs of learning, discovery, and oftentimes — safety”.

They’re hosting a free harvest sharing at the Grange in Willits. One week from this Sunday, on Sept. 25th from 9:30 a.m. to noon for all interested. There’s also a pancake breakfast the same morning. Head to the back of the Grange for the Harvest Sharing. There will be tables accepting donations of food related items to give away, plus you can take whatever you and your family might need. To top it off, the entire thing is free. They’re also inviting herbalists to bring culinary and/or medicinal herbs, fresh or dried. They are setting up a table just for that.

Since we’ve had such hot weather, wine country may be threatened. The climate crisis, first starting with a deep frost, then hot weather and drought have dried out vineyards. Wine-grape production is supposed to be down about 4% this year to 3.5 million tons. The USDA reported the numbers, which local owners say could mean they have the second-smallest crop for the last ten years. The last time the harvest was damaged since then was due to fires in 2020. Experts say vineyards are getting dangerously close to more damage due to even more intense and frequent weather disasters.

Sonoma County is asking local companies to get their employees to get the COVID booster or be tested twice a week. The county’s Public Health Officer Dr. Sundari Mase is making a strong recommendation, not a mandate. She’s also recommending those unvaccinated or unboosted to wear a mask while indoors. It comes as cases are rapidly rising in the state and to prevent even more outbreaks. The county’s rethinking its own vaccination and testing mandate for county employees after Mase’s recommendation. The county has also recently issued some new health orders for local school employees, emergency responders and those at dental offices, pharmacies and temporary disaster shelters to get boosted or test twice a week.

The first state in the union to hit 5 million COVID cases is Calif. The state dashboard went over the milestone yesterday after the holiday weekend. The state Department of Public Health posted the updated case numbers, also noting more than 75,500 deaths. The first case in California was nearly two years ago, January 25, 2020. It was nearly a year before the state hit one million infections, last November and it’s taken off from there. Texas has the next highest, more than 4.4 million and Florida topped 3.9 million as of Sunday.

The Ukiah Unified School District’s music department has come back live and continues in the new year. Two in-person holiday shows this month were some kids first experience performing on a stage in front of a huge audience. Teachers said they did great and the electricity of a live audience with the kids all dressed up was gratifying. The next performances will happen next spring and some students may be able to travel to see the San Francisco Symphony perform Stravinsky’s “Rite of Spring”.

There are still hundreds of people without power after a winter storm, impacting Humboldt, Mendocino and Trinity counties. About 9700 customers were still waiting for their power to be restored as of dinner time last night. PG&E has not given an estimated time of restoration. A spokesperson for the utility company says crews have been working non-stop patrolling lines to find the problem. She says there were downed trees and access issues because of all the snow impacting higher elevations. They need to bring in specialized equipment for some remote areas. About 3,000 PG&E customers in Southern Humboldt and Northern Mendocino are in the dark, more than half in Mendo.

A man from Covelo arrested after a multi-car crash was pretty drunk, according to police. Willits Police say Jared Reed Thompson hit six vehicles before taking off and being found passed out in his car. Police gave him a field sobriety test and say he “blew almost four times the legal limit for DUI”. Police also say they got a call to a crash, finding 2 cars were slammed into at a Safeway, then three more at the gas pump there, before a final head on crash. Thompson’s charged with several crimes including DUI, felony evasion of a police officer and felony hit and run resulting in death or injury.

If you want to adopt a pet, now is the time in Ukiah. The shelter is reporting being at a critical point with the dog population. They say they have to start to increase the amount of adoptions they have been doing or could be faced with putting healthy dogs down. Local rescues are full, their partner organizations are also full and they have more and more dogs coming in every day. They report not having to euthanize animals for years, because they had the space and resources, but not anymore. They say if you know anyone who may be interested, to PLEASE come forth to adopt. It’s free, all you have to pay for is the $25 license. For more info and to see pictures of the dogs and to submit applications, go to: www.mendoanimalshelter.com You can also call them: 707-467-6453.

A car crash near Leggett after a car may have hit ice ends with some minor injuries. Mendo Fever reports hearing about the accident on the scanner traffic and the California Highway Patrol Traffic Incident Information Page showed several people may have been injured after the car went off the 101 near Leggett. The news site reported the car couldn’t be seen on the road and may have crashed over the bank near Little Dan Creek.  The crash yesterday morning of a woman and 7 year old child in a Honda CRV. The woman and child had non-life threatening injuries and the car, which rolled 600 feet down an embankment, had major damage.

Plastic shopping bags are reportedly being sold by large retailers in California, which is against the law. The report by Reuters news agency says the retailers were also misleading customers by selling the bags with language and symbols on them leading them to believe the plastic bags could be recycled. A state-appointed commission detailed how the bags had the “chasing arrows” logo and the words “recycle” and “recyclable” on them. This according to the California Statewide Commission on Recycling Markets and Curbside Recycling who is now asking the state attorney general and CalRecycle to curb the practice, calling it illegal labeling which could lead to more plastic pollution.

The Humboldt County Jail has had quite the outbreak of COVID- 19, but things seem to be calming down. Two more cases were reported Monday after thirty-six inmates and about a half dozen staffers tested positive. The outbreak started a couple of weeks ago, but the Sheriff’s Office says they have it controlled now. The 69 bed housing unit where it happened was at 70% capacity. Corrections staff say all who tested positive were taken from the unit so they could isolate. They had been testing daily due to the outbreak but are reportedly back to weekly testing after 3 days of all negatives.

A couple of fires have been reported in Ukiah, but neither one anything big. The Ukiah Valley Fire Authority says they got a call to two structure fires Monday, one of them was at a large apartment building on Village Circle. That fire turned out to be exhaust from a dryer vent. But about 4 hours after that there was another report of an apartment complex on fire, but it turned out to be a dumpster fire. They reported it seemed suspicious in nature.

The Lake County Board of Supervisors have turned in their new maps for redistricting. They had their second and final reading to approve the new supervisorial district boundaries last week with approval unanimous. It has to be done each decade after the US Census. After a bunch of meetings since this summer with a consultant and county staff the five supervisorial districts changed slightly. A resolution to approve the maps was approved 2 weeks ago, then last week the final vote. The deadline was Dec. 15th.

A man from Clearlake has been arrested on various charges after police say he smoked a bunch of meth the got in his car and drove in Ukiah. Police say Michael Sorrell was driving without a license, in a bike lane, erratically, and when a cop tried stopping him, he kept going. The officer activated his emergency lights, to no avail. They say he kept driving in an unsafe manner with wanton disregard for the public. Officers followed for over 2 miles, then he crashed into a curb causing front end damage to his car, so he got out and ran, but landed in a blackberry bush and finally surrendered. Police found drug paraphernalia, weapons, and burglary tools so he was booked at the Mendocino County jail for multiple charges.

A man in Middletown has been arrested after deputies on routine patrol saw him walking amongst several cars behind a convenience store, thinking he might be tinkering with the cars. The deputy went up to the guy, identified as 26 year old Travis Minor of Kelseyville, who said his car ran out of gas. But the deputy knew he’d been arrested before for doing the same thing. He was stopped and given a field sobriety test, to see if he was high. The deputy couldn’t get a straight answer out of Minor about his car so he was arrested for being high. The deputy also found he had a Mercedes key on him and saw a Mercedes down the street from the convenience and the key matched it. But the car had just been reported stolen. The owner of the car was apparently an acquaintance of Minor’s but he didn’t have permission to take the car. Minor was booked into jail for being Under the Influence of a Controlled Substance and Vehicle Theft.

A Local Assistance Center is opening in Mendocino County for those impacted by the Hopkins Fire. But it’s not happening for a week and a half. The Center is a single location where people affected by a fire can tap into disaster assistance relief programs and services. Several different representatives from local, state, nonprofit and other agencies come to the Center to help victims.  It’s happening for Hopkins victims in Redwood Valley, next Thursday, October 7th from 1:00 PM – 6:00 PM at the “Old Jehovah’s Witnesses church”. They’re requiring masks and social distancing due to the pandemic and will have hand sanitizer, and conduct health screenings.

For more information, please contact the Disaster Recovery Team at (707) 234-6303 or disasterrecovery@mendocinocounty.org.

A man from Willits has been arrested after a domestic violence situation. The Sheriffs Office reports getting a call two Tuesdays ago to the 20000 block of South Main Street in Willits finding the couple, a 47 year old woman, and 50 year old Kelly Fonsen, who the woman said had been drinking with her all day. Deputies say the pair got into an argument and the woman was injured and needed medical attention. She was taken to the hospital for treatment and Fonsen was arrested for Domestic Violence Battery  and Battery Causing Great Bodily Injury and booked into jail on $25,000.00 bail.

Two men have been arrested for drugs and weapons charges, one of them also had a fake police badge. Deputies got a call two Tuesdays ago to a burglary next to the Leggett Volunteer Fire Department. Apparently firefighters spotted a couple cars and two men nearby loitering. A Fire Captain approached and one flashed a badge, saying they were a US Marshal, but then took off. Deputies saw the two cars on the 101 in Laytonville and stopped one. Daniel Gorman was stopped and detained while the car was searched, a replica gun was found with drugs and blank ammo. At the same time a CHP officer saw the other car parked and contacted Austin Shealor who was on parole and found he was involved in the earlier burglary. He was also found with drugs. He too was arrested. The charges for both included Burglary, Conspiracy, Carrying a Loading Gun, Wearing a Peace Officer Badge fraudulently and Possession of Narcotic. Gorman was held on $15,000.00 bail and Shealor was held on No Bail due to his parole.

A couple in Laytonville have been arrested for Robbery, Burglary and Conspiracy. The Sheriff’s Office says a week ago Sunday they got a call to reports of a robbery, but a woman reported there, Miranda Mullins of Willits was already gone. Deputies say they found another woman had cashed a large check with Jacob Sanderson of Ukiah. Then a couple days later Mullins walked into that woman’s home without knocking and demanded money. And the woman thought she had a gun so she gave her money and Mullins left with Sanderson and a third party. They were found after a BOLO alert and arrested. Mullins and Sanderson were booked on $150,000.00 bail.

The State Legislature has unanimously approved bills to try to avert these catastrophic fire seasons we’ve been dealing with for years. The Governor signed a new law that creates a “dedicated workforce” who are charged with overseeing wildfire prevention and preparedness. The bill authored by Assemblyman Jim Wood creates a new branch of the office of the State Fire Marshall to work year round only on fire prevention, including fuel reduction and hardening homes.  There are already several programs with Cal Fire in play that would all come under this one new branch.

Yuba Community College is working with PG&E for a microgrid power station at the School’s Lake County Campus. The College District’s Governing Board has approved Woodland Community College, part of the Yuba Community College District, will get a temporary microgrid power station in front of the campus.  Apparently it’s only during wildfire season, so this fall, because when wildfires happen, power is turned off as part of PG&E’s public safety power shut-off events. So the Lower Clear Lake area would continue to get power. The college’s board approved the move this spring. The temporary and permanent stations will give power to a one-two mile area during any intentional power downs.

A man has reportedly died near the Wildwood Campground after being crushed by a tree. Mendo Fever reported hearing about the incident on the scanner this weekend. The report that paramedics were called to the 29000 block of Highway 20 near the campground after the elderly man was hit by the tree and killed. No word how the incident occurred.

Six more people have died due to COVID19 in Mendocino County. And this is a report from Friday, during the Public Health Officer, Dr. Andy Coren’s regular update. There have now been 82 people who have died from the virus in the county. Dr. Coren reported almost 89-percent of those hospitalized are not vaccinated, adding “the vaccines are very effective against severe disease, hospitalizations, Intensive Care Unit admissions, and deaths.” Also on Friday, he reported more than a dozen people were in the hospital with the illness, five in an ICU, where there remains only 18-percent capacity. Dr. Coren says the surge of cases has slightly leveled, but he expects more again after Halloween and the year end holidays. He also spoke about booster shots, but there’s no guidelines from the state on that yet.

The judge that’s been handling the PG&E case for months heard from the utility about the Dixie Fire. The company says they had considered turning off the power on the line that they believe may have been involved in the massive fire. They also answered who’s allowed to turn off power in an emergency and why it took so long to get to the scene of the dangerous line. The company says a distribution operator can shut off a line, and one considered that on July 13th, but apparently they found a circuit breaker was closed and no excessive ground current was found. They also say there was no indication of an emergency. The company told the judge they continue investigating after a tree fell on the so-called Bucks Circuit line. It was ranked as the 11th most dangerous line they had.

The Governor has signed a new climate-spending bill for about $15 billion dollars. The money would be used for zero-emission school buses, starting smarter agricultural practices and to pay for help in urban areas living in so-called “heat islands” and more. The Governor was at the Sequoia National Forest last week near a massive fire saying the spending was needed due to the “challenges of extreme weather patterns.” The bills were part of the last spending package in the budget which his opposition says didn’t have money water storage projects for new reservoirs, something voters asked for back in 2014. The bill includes money for wildfire prevention like clearing dead trees and brush that start fires and make them more intense. More for drought response like water recycling. And for ways to battle extreme heat like tree planting and boosting green space.

A man from Lucerne reported missing last month is still missing. 63 year old Ronald Meluso was last heard from August 18th and reported missing about a week later. The Sheriff’s Office reports he may not have a car and has not tried to reach family, friends, or law enforcement to get help. They also say he has not been returning phone calls. Relatives also told deputies the behavior was out of character for Meluso. Deputies have been searching ever since in multiple areas and have served several search warrants too. They’re asking anyone who may know where Meluso is to call the Sheriff’s Office.

We’re getting close to the end of California’s eviction moratorium. The moratorium put in place when the state shutdown during the height of the pandemic. This Thursday tenants will have to find a way to make good on back rent or risk being removed by their landlords for not paying rent. The Press Democrat reports about 7% of tenants are behind on rent in Calif. which adds up to an estimated $3.5 billion in debt. Renters will still have some protections until next March like applying for rent relief from the state.

The state’s trying to incentivize folks to get the COVID19 vaccine by doling out cold, hard cash. The Governor announced yesterday there will be prizes from a total pot of $116.5 million. $1.5 million each will be given to 10 Californians, the largest single of any state. The gov. says there will also be gift cards of $50 for personal use or grocery store cards to 2 million people who get vaccinated. When the state fully reopens June 15th, there will be a drawing to award the 1.5 million dollar prizes. 30 other people with get $50,000 each. The smaller win drawings start June 4th.  The prizes are for anyone 12 and older who gets at least one vaccine shot. An immunization database will automatically enter people into the drawings. The Governor looking to have all the wins distributed by June 15th.

Several people coming together at the Arbor Youth Resource Center after a mural featuring a missing and possibly endangered indigenous woman was completed. Khadijah Britton of Covelo is believed dead and has been missing for 3 years. Her family believes her ex-boyfriend abducted her at gunpoint and her case has turned cold. At the mural unveiling yesterday, a celebration, with several speakers, dancing and prayer. Shane Grammar painted the mural with the support of the Drug-Free Communities Coalition Director and Project Coordinator. There were also several volunteers. The mural shows Britton, a symbol for the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women’s movement and a large red handprint, which is a compilation of hundreds of individual handprints by those at the celebration.

The Mendocino County Public Health Office says there’s been a spike in COVID-19 cases. And the health officer says the spike could mean the county moves back to the more restrictive Orange Tier ahead of the state totally reopening next month. They’re encouraging everyone to get the vaccine, get tested if you suspect you may be infected and isolate. They’re also recommending the continued use of masks in most circumstances for those vaccinated and not. Dr. Coren says there could be more cases after this holiday weekend from gatherings and then later, graduation celebrations. He says to hold gatherings outdoors, limit indoor gatherings, wear masks in crowded spaces and the rest of the protocols we’ve gotten used to this past year.

For more information about COVID-19 vaccines, testing, masking, and gatherings contact the Mendocino County Public Health COVID-19 call center at 707-472-2759 or visit our website at: mendocinocounty.org/community/novel-coronavirus.

The CHP along with police and firefighters at an incident after someone reportedly doused some bales of hay with gasoline and ignited them. Mendo Fever reports scanner traffic says the suspect, who was arrested, tossed the flaming hay bales onto Old River Road, south of the Mendocino County Office of Education. There were several firefighters on the scene. The scanner info also said the suspect may have mentally unstable or a danger to himself or others.

A burglary in progress call has ended in the arrest of two people in Little River. The Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office reports getting a call Tuesday morning finding a man and woman had left a home in a dark colored Volvo sedan. They were seen on the shoulder of Highway 1, but the car was empty. Deputies and a CHP officers surrounded the area and found Richard Olstad and Monique Valador. The pair were positively id’d by witnesses to the burglary and arrested. It was found also that Olstad was on parole with a felony arrest warrant and a misdemeanor for domestic violence. Olstad was charged with First Degree Burglary, Parole Violation, Commit Felony while on Pre-Trial Release for Pending Felony and held on $120,000 bail. Valador for First Degree Burglary, also Felony Probation Violation and Commit Felony while on Pre-Trial Release for Pending Felony and held on $75,000.00 bail.

A man accused of robbing a Burger King in Willits last year is going to prison. The Mendocino County DA reports getting a call from a retired Sonoma County Sheriff’s Deputy in the drive-through. He had seen two men in the parking lot taking a giant bag of marijuana from a young man and young woman by force. They tried to run towards Laytonville but then were seen by an off-duty Lake County DA investigator who followed their rental car as other law enforcement responded. One of them was arrested and charged with robbery in the second degree, he’s 25 year old Christian Izac Flores of Long Island, New York, who was convicted by plea of robbery in February. He was in court this week for sentencing and got 180 days due to credit for time served.

A man from Ukiah’s been arrested after reports of an argument between a couple in Redwood Valley. When deputies got there they say the man had left the area. He’s identified as Joshua Colcleaser, but deputies say they found there was only an argument and no crime. But it was found the guy was on probation out of Lake County which includes a search clause. Deputies found pepper spray on him, which he’s not allowed to have. So Colcleaser was arrested for being a felon in possession of tear gas and for a probation violation. But due to the COVID protocols he was freed with a promise to return for his court date.

After an argument in a parking lot in Ukiah, a woman was arrested for manslaughter. The Sheriff’s office reports a patrol deputy observed the argument and arrested 41 year old Jade Anderson of Sacramento after she gave a fake name of Jane Smith. She was identified soon after the deputy started to try to find out if she knew the man she was arguing with. The woman gave two other fake names and finally admitted she had a warrant out of Sacramento for domestic violence. They found she had a felony warrant for manslaughter so she was arrested and held without bail.

Before the DA could charge for a crime, an arrest warrant was issued in Laytonville for vandalism. Widely called a Ramey Arrest. It happened at Geigers Market, Pour Girls Coffee, Frontier Communications and the Laytonville Unified School District. Deputies say they got a call to a string of vandalism incidents at the businesses and identified the possible perpetrator as Antonio Rodriguez and a search warrant was obtained for Rodriguez’s home. He was not home but deputies connected him to the vandalism. He was found later, arrested and booked into jail on $15,000.00 bail.

The former mayor of Windsor in more trouble, this time for possibly using campaign cash to pay a former girlfriend and an employee at his family’s winery in Healdsburg. An anonymous complaint filed last month about expenditures by Dominic Foppoli for spending campaign money on alcohol and airfare. The complaint is being investigated by the Fair Political Practices Commission before a formal investigation is opened. The former mayor resigned just this past Monday after nine women accused him of various crimes including rape, sexual abuse and misconduct from this past spring and dating back to 2003.

More unemployment claims again. The state’s claims up a second week in a row, but nationwide filings are sharply down. Nearly 72,000 new initial claims have been filed for the week ending May 22nd. That’s up 1,500 from the week before. And 60% more than before times, January and February of 2020, the last months before the state was shut down due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Fire reported at Solid Waste of Willits. The transfer station had to temporarily close Wednesday after a fire in a dump trailer which ignited surrounding trash. Apparently a foul odor could be detected throughout the city of Willits.  Mendo Fever reports the Little Lake Fire Protection District and Brooktrails Fire Department were on the scene, quickly dousing the fire. Police reported to the scene too. The site manager says at one point flames towered above at about 8 feet high. He says it seems a customer may have dumped hot coals into the dump trailer and they found a burnt mattress near the fire.

A man in Talmage has been arrested for a domestic violence assault. Another man says he and Jose Manuel Verduzco, his cousin had an altercation. Witnesses say Verduzco caused his cousin severe injury on his head. The victim went to the hospital with his girlfriend and at the hospital the victim identified Verduzco as his attacker. Verduzco was stopped by police while driving and had his car searched because he was on probation for a previous violent offense. Deputies found a blunt object used to assault Verduzco’s cousin. So he was arrested for assault with a deadly weapon and a probation violation. He was held on no bail for violating the probation terms.

It’s been a couple months since the first coronavirus case hit the Bay Area, now in Lake County, the first person has contracted it. The Public Health Officer with the announcement yesterday of the first positive case in the County, almost three weeks after the Public Health Officer issued the shelter in place order. Dr. Gary Pace says all the efforts the last month to avoid travel and unnecessary activity paid off, compared to Sonoma County and the Bay Area, Lake County had longer to prepare. He added the County would have probably had more cases sooner if they had been less proactive.

The Gov. has announced a new website so healthcare providers can find critical medical supplies and others can donate, sell or offer to make items. www.covid19supplies.ca.gov allows companies a way to distribute 13 of the most essential medical supplies, like ventilators, N95 masks and test kits. The Gov. also announced there would be a Testing Task Force, a partnership with the government and private industry to get tests to those who need them, scaling up the amount of tests being conducting. He’s asking companies, organizations and individuals with medical supplies to help donate or sell them on the new site. The state also working with the University of California, San Diego and University of California, Davis for new testing hubs, Stanford Medicine for blood serum testing and a partnership with Abbott Laboratories for rapid point-of-care tests at 13 health care delivery systems and 75 sites.

The Mendocino County Public Health Officer says the four people who have tested positive so far for coronavirus are all doing well. Dr. Noemi Doohan says she’s working from home where she’s sheltering in place like so many others, using her computer, zoom meetings, conference-calls and says she’s writing guidance along with the county counsel and County CEO, who’s acting as the COVID-19 Incident Commander. She spoke to the Daily Journal regarding new guidance for mask wearing when you leave your house for essential activities, agreeing with that for those asymptomatic, which she says can last 48 hours.

A man in Ukiah’s been arrested after a fight with another man escalated, leaving the victim bloodied on the street. The Sheriff’s office reports getting a call 2 weekends ago to the assault in the 1400 block of South State Street. Ukiah Valley Fire Authority and an ambulance were on the scene too after a man was found next to a bicycle with a laceration to his head, and bleeding from the laceration. The man says he got into a fight with the other man, identified as Jay Hire because he thought Hire had on two much cologne. He says Hire took a concrete brick and threw it at him striking him in the head. Hire admitted the altercation, so he was arrested for assault with a deadly weapon and was held on $30,000.00 bail.

5 teens in Ukiah have been arrested after a reported shooting during the Shelter in Place order. The Sheriff’s office says they got a call early in the morning 2 weekends ago about multiple gunshots fired and saw an old Honda sedan leaving the area with several people inside. They went after the Honda and saw the car filled with juveniles and noticed a sawed off short barrel .22 caliber semi-automatic rifle. They also found a steel pipe in the car, items used to take nitrous oxide, which people inhale to get high, plus evidence of pot being used. The 5 arrested on various charges including possession of a billy club, carrying a concealed firearm in a vehicle, possession of nitrous oxide and violation of parole. The five were first taken to Adventist Health Ukiah Valley for a medical clearance, then to Mendocino County Juvenile Detention Center.

A man in Laytonville has been arrested after cops went to check on an elderly woman. When deputies drove up they saw three Hispanic men standing near a blue Polaris RZR off road utility vehicle and another tan colored Polaris Ranger UTV. When they saw the deputy, they ran. Two down a hill towards the 101, the third drove one of the off road vehicles away and they were caught after jumping off and running into the woods. That person was found with a fully loaded firearm magazine belonging to a .45 caliber handgun and some suspected methamphetamine. Javier Madrigal Sanchez was arrested for several crimes and held on $35,000.00 bail.

It finally happened, the first case of COVID-19 in Lake County. Yesterday we heard from the Public Health Officer, Dr. Gary Pace about the case. It was reportedly from contact with a known case at an out of county workplace. Public Health Nursing is helping the patient with their stay at home routine. The County is conducting contact tracing to try to make sure nobody else has been in contact with the infected patient. The Public Health Office says it’s more important than before to follow the ‘shelter in place’ order as there probably will be more cases in coming weeks. The office says those following the stay at home orders are helping to keep the spread slow so that it’s manageable at local medical facilities, and those ignoring the ‘shelter in place’ order, run the risk of jeopardizing their family and friends’ health, and vulnerable people in your area.

For Lake County-specific Coronavirus information, visit the Lake County Health Services Department’s website: http://health.co.lake.ca.us

If you still have questions, send an email request: MHOAC@lakecountyca.gov.

You can also call during business hours: 707-263-8174

A woman in Ukiah has been arrested for domestic violence. The sheriff’s office reports getting a call Friday to a physical assault in progress in the 2200 block of South State Street. They found a woman, identified as Layne Cassidy had a knife and had assaulted a man at the home. Deputies say it was her fiancé, the two were living together. Deputies say a verbal argument escalated and the woman retrieved a knife from the kitchen and the man picked up a coffee table to use as a shield and got away as the woman tried stabbing him. He dropped the table and ran to a neighbors. Cassidy was arrested for assault with a deadly weapon and domestic violence battery and booked on $30,000.00 bail.

The ex CFO for the town of Paradise is against the plan for PG&E to emerge from bankruptcy this June. The Press Democrat reports Karin Gowins the former comptroller of the town devastated by the Camp Fire, says she resigned from the bankruptcy committee that was working with the utility company on claims for wildfire victims so she could go public with her concern about the $13.5 billion dollar settlement. She’s now the third who left the committee these last few weeks and says she never supported the settlement and didn’t want her name to be connected to it. In order for the settlement to go thru, the committee and the lawyers working on it were not allowed to oppose the deal. Two other committee members agreed that PG&E stock for half of the settlement was a raw deal. Especially since victims would probably sell their shares as stocks lose value. And since the pandemic, there’s been a 57% drop in value.

The Shelter in Place order has sprouted new businesses in Ukiah, out of already existing ones. The Daily Journal reports Rapscallion Distillers is selling hand sanitizer. The newspaper reports owners Michelle and Lee Sassen took action after hearing distilleries would be allowed to manufacture sanitizer without paying an alcohol tax. The distillery started offering fifty milliliter containers for free to first responders and essential workers and then started to make small batches available for individuals.  They say they’re going to do curbside sales for the hand sanitizer and brandies and spirits. Also in town, Charbay Distillery’s owners Jennie and Marko Karakasevic are producing sanitizer of various sizes starting this week. Tamar Distillers in Redwood Valley is helping differently, finding a way to distribute alcohol to hospitals and nursing homes to use as disinfectant.

The state superintendent of schools has new guidance on graduations and requirements since kids are doing long distance learning now. Seniors on track to graduate should be able to according to the State Board of Education President. Colleges are changing things up to, the way they accept pass fail classes and A-G courses for seniors and juniors. There will also be flexibility in testing requirements, transcripts, and considerations on financial aid.

The Navy captain from Santa Rosa fired from command now tests positive for coronavirus after complaining his ship was infected. Brett Crozier was the skipper of one of the US Navy’s 11 aircraft carriers. He got tangled up in controversy for a letter he sent to request an expeditious evacuation of his crew as the coronavirus began to spread amongst his crew. More than 150 of the crew on the nuclear- powered aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt tested positive for COVID-19. The Press Democrat reports Crozier starting becoming symptomatic before he was removed from command Thursday, he’s in quarantine now at a U.S. naval base on Guam. His crew hailed him as he left the ship. The acting secretary of the Navy fired him after losing confidence in his ability to run the ship after he sent what should have been a classified letter which circulated widely about coronavirus spreading amongst the crew of 5,000 quickly in which he asked for swift action to remove and isolate thousands of sailors.

Project Sanctuary wants the public to know it’s still supporting domestic violence victims even though there’s a shelter in place order. The executive director is herself recuperating at home after contract the virus. Dina Polkinghorne tells the Daily Journal they’ve posted on their Facebook page, they want help from the public to flatten the domestic violence curve. A spin on what’s been spoken of regarding slowing the spread of coronavirus. She says sometimes shelter in place orders can have unfortunate, unintended side effects and says she’s concerned about the amount of help they can give during the outbreak.  She says they’re working on new procedures because of social distancing and courtroom’s being closed.

Project Sanctuary depends on the community for a substantial portion of their operating budget. Checks can be mailed to PO Box 450, Ukiah CA 95482, or donated online via their [website] https://www.projectsanctuary.org.

For those needing emergency assistance, Project Sanctuary’s 24-hour hotline for inland residents is (707) 463-HELP. Coastal residents may call (707) 964-HELP. For more information visit https://www.projectsanctuary.org.

All racing events at the Lakeport Speedway have been canceled for the month of April. The Northern Calif. Racing Association say they’ve been notified by the Lake County Fair CEO that since the State of Emergency regarding coronavirus and new guidelines released by the Governor’s office on social distancing, then further guidance 3 weeks ago by the California Department of Public Health to cancel or postpone gatherings, that would include the race schedule. With that, there’s no prospective race start date, but the association’s president says they’re working hard to prepare the track for use after the order is lifted. They say they’re working with the Lake County Fair to keep the public informed.

A woman from Nice is accused of leading police on a chase that at one point hit 112 miles an hour on Highway 29. The Lake County Sheriff’s office says 37-year-old Miranda Ellingwoodestrella was driving a stolen car when cops tried to stop her Saturday afternoon around 3:30. Officers say she took off but was finally pulled over on Highway 175 after that high-speed pursuit. According to a release from the sheriff’s office, Ellingwoodestrella was uncooperative and acted suspiciously, so a deputy had to fire a beanbag round that hit her in the leg. She was eventually arrested and was booked into the county jail on $35,000 bond. Charges against her include vehicle theft, evading, and possession of a stolen vehicle. She is also on felony probation for burglary in Mendocino County.

A man from Clearlake is facing several charges after he was arrested following a chase on Highway 53. Sheriff’s deputies say 65-year-old Ronald Antoni took off when they tried to pull him over for making an illegal U-turn near Olympic Drive on Sunday night. The pursuit eventually ended when Antoni pulled into the parking lot of Adventist Hospital. Deputies say he told them he was trying to get to the hospital and also admitted he had a few drinks and had smoked meth. He was booked into the county jail on charges of evading, reckless driving, and DUI.

Two Lake County first responders have been cited for bravery by congressman Mike Thomson. The congressman says Sheriff’s Deputy Marc De La Torre and Lake County Fire Protection District Chief Willie Sapeta have received his Fifth District Public Safety Hero of the Year. Award. Thompson says both have served with distinction and gone above and beyond the call of duty to help out in emergency situations. Deputy De la Torre was specifically honored for saving the life of a child who had become unresponsive in its mother’s arms, while Chief Sapata was recognized for his leadership during the devastating wildfires over the past several years.

Small businesses in the Cobb area are now eligible for low-interest loans through the Cobb Area Council. The loans have an interest rate of 2 percent will range from $2,500 to $7,500 and can be used for costs related to wildfires, the public safety power shutoffs, or business start-up and expansion. Larger loans will also be considered. Cobb Area Council Economic Development Committee Chair Jessica Pyska says the money for the loans comes from a $200,000 grant awarded late last year by the Federal Home Loan Bank. The Area Council and the Office of Community Development Services have more information.

Two people are in isolation a hospital in Napa with concerns about the Coronavirus. Both were passengers on that cruise ship who were evacuated off Japan and flown to Travis Air Force Base earlier this week. One of them tested positive for the virus on the ship, the other tested negative there, but has since shown symptoms. 5 cruise passengers were taken to hospitals in Solano County after they landed at Travis, but doctors say there weren’t enough isolation beds for the two who ended up at Queen of Peace Hospital in Napa.

California insurance commissioner Ricardo Lara is facing a lawsuit from a consumer group over records related to his campaign. Consumer Watchdog wants to see Lara’s calendar and get more details about his meetings with insurance executives who donated to his last campaign. The commissioner says that information is privileged and not for the public. The meetings involved campaign donors who had ties to a company called Applied Underwriters, which had issues before the state insurance commission which Lara heads. He says the donations and meetings did not effect any commission decisions

California lawmakers are discussing a bill that would prohibit insurance companies from canceling or not renewing policies for homeowners who live in communities that meet state standards for protection against wildfires. The proposal would also require financial incentives to homeowners who have taken fire risk reduction steps on their property. Backers say more people in fire-prone areas have seen their policies canceled and that it is unfair for insurance companies to penalize those who live in places that have tried to minimize the risk.

A new poll says Bernie Sanders is widening his lead in California, less than two weeks before the March 3rd primary. The Public Policy Institute poll shows Sanders with 32 percent support of likely Democratic voters, with Joe Biden at 14 percent, Elizabeth Warren at 13 percent and Michael Bloomberg and Pete Buttegeig at 1 percent. It is Sanders’ biggest lead since the PPC polling started last summer and it is also the best showing for Bloomberg. Those asked say the ability to defeat President Trump will be the most important consideration when they vote.

The man in a standoff with police last year will be checked out by two doctors to see if he’s competent to stand trial. Lake Co News reports 31 year old Francisco Morales-Gomez was arrested last November after a long standoff with police where they say he was holding his 6-year-old son hostage. He was set for trial at the start of the New Year, but his lawyer told the judge he was concerned about Morales-Gomez’s mental competence. It all comes after his wife said he pulled a gun at their house. Then Clearlake Police and SWAT teams from Lake County and Sonoma County came to the house and nearby homes were evacuated. Turns out he only had a bb gun. He was charged with false imprisonment of a hostage, false imprisonment by violence, child abuse, and resisting an officer with violence or the threat of violence. He’s due back in court February 11th and two doctors will report on his mental health.

The Lake County Board of Supervisors will present a proclamation after wildfires last year. The board meeting as usual in the morning tomorrow at 9, will present the proclamation to recognize Caltrans District 1 and Konocti Conservation Camp Crews for fighting fires last year. They will also hear an update on the Lake County Tourism Improvement District. The district is a marketing arm for the County, charging a tax that ultimately pays for marketing and to attract visitors to increase tourism with overnight stays. The District first formed in October 2018.

A man from Lakeport has been arrested after being found on Terrace Middle School grounds with drugs and a knife. Police say the man, 34 year old Michael King had no reason to be there Friday morning. The School Resource Officer found him on campus and made contact, seeing a folding knife in his possession.  Cops say the Resource Officer found he was illegally in possession of the knife and no actual reason he was there. He was charged with possession of a weapon on school grounds and misdemeanor charges of possession of suspected methamphetamine, possession of about a half pound of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia. He was booked on $15,000 bail.

A man from Oklahoma has been arrested after a break in at an auto parts store in Covelo. The Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office reports getting a call after the Napa Auto Parts Store alarm went off, they found a broken front window. The business owner told them someone had stolen a Honda Generator from the store. After deputies spoke to witnesses in the area, they found someone had seen a white man carrying a generator nearby. The man identified as Daniel Batten was found in downtown Covelo. Police found the generator and arrested him near Hidden Oaks Convenience Store on burglary and felony vandalism charges and held him on $15,000.00 bail.

3 major political parties in Mendocino County have reportedly informed the County Elections Office they’ll allow those with no party preference to cross over and vote on other ballots in the primary. Last October, on the 135th day before the Presidential Primary, the American Independent Party, the Democratic Party, and the Libertarian Party notified the Secretary of State they’ll allow non-affiliated party voters the right to “crossover” to their political ballot. Those voters were sent Vote By Mail info to see if they wanted to choose a certain political party ballot or stay the way they were. They’ll take changes until Election Day or the last possible mail in ballot day. If you want to vote on the Republican, Green Party or Peace and Freedom ballot, you have to re-register with that deadline at Feb. 18th.

More water allocations are being put into the 2020 State Water Project. Last Friday the State Department of Water Resources announced the increase to 15 percent of requested supplies, up the 5% initial allocation announced Dec. 2nd. They take a look each month after getting reports on snowpack levels and runoff. Water from Clear Lake runs into Cache Creek then into the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta, a source for the State Water Project. The Dept. of Water Resources Director says after some big storms in December, but not so much this month, the snowpack is below average.

There’s a new State Director for the Bureau of Land Management. Last week Karen Mouritsen took the helm of the agency. She joins after being the State Director for the BLM Eastern States Office. There she oversaw BLM lands and minerals in 22 states along and east of the Mississippi River. Kym Kemp reports Mouritsen also worked in the Nation’s Capital in key leadership roles including senior level as the BLM Deputy Assistant Director for Energy, Minerals, and Realty Management, BLM Budget Officer and BLM liaison to the Assistant Secretary for Land and Minerals Management.

A legislator from Calif. looking to get a bill passed regarding wildfire disasters and lost school time. State Senator Bill Dodd has a new bill called the “Disaster Relief Instructional Recovery Program” that would fund summer school to make up for lost days due to fires, other natural disasters and intended blackouts. There would be no requirement for schools or students or teachers to participate, a school district would just choose to opt in. Districts as well as charter schools would be able to join programs if they had lost five or more days of school because of disasters during one school year or as many as 10 instructional days over two out of three consecutive school years. So far this school year because of fires and intentional power shutoffs, 800,000 students were affected with school closures.

Two people in Southern California have reportedly become the third and fourth people in the U.S. to officially be diagnosed with a sometimes deadly virus circulating in China. The Centers for Disease Control says someone traveling from the Chinese city of Wuhan — the heart of the epidemic — tested positive for the Corona virus. One patient in Orange County in isolation in a hospital and said to be in good condition. The second case in LA County. It’s also in Washington State and Chicago. Effects like pneumonia, include fever, coughing and wheezing. It’s said to be closely related to the deadly SARS and MERS viruses.

Prescription drug costs are part of the Governor’s work this year, now including insulin. Word that the governor wanted to start the state’s own drug label, now insulin. The Governor’s office has not said what the cost differential would be if the state gets to into the business of selling prescription drugs. The Governor says they’re currently negotiating ways to lower prices on drugs like insulin, which he says is at the top of the list. The Sacramento Bee newspaper reports about 7.4 million Americans use insulin. There are only three companies controlling the insulin market in the country. The financial analyst for the legislature says lawmakers should be cautious, adding it’s not a bad idea, but it could also increase costs over the long term.

The Bureau of Land Management is looking for public input finding lands where the public is allowed to recreate, fish and hunt, but where there’s no public access. The BLM will be posting the first priority list online by the middle of March. They’ll keep updating it biannually, for ten years. They’re asking the public to identify parcels to be included on the list before the end of February. And it’s a leap year, so you have until Saturday, February 29th. The agency says it’s worked tirelessly with other federal and state agencies, public and private partners to continually find public land access issues proactively. The land has to be managed by the BLM and be on at least 640 contiguous acres with either restricted or no public access.

More than a dozen states including Calif. have filed a lawsuit against the federal government for trying to block food stamps for nearly 700,000 Americans. The Calif. Atty. General Xavier Becerra says nobody should have to choose between a hot meal and paying their rent. The states and Washington, D.C., along with New York City say the Trump administration did not properly follow the required steps to put the wide ranging rules in place. It’s not the first time Calif. has sued the Trump Administration, there are 65 lawsuits in all.

Lawmakers are trying to reform the Cannabis industry’s tax code. Assemblyman Rob Bonta has introduced a bill to “suspend the state’s cultivation tax and reduce the excise tax from 15% to 11%” over 3 years”. Bonta says it’s to stop the black market by reducing the difference in pricing from illegal sales to the legal market. He says the illicit market is still undercutting the legal market and businesses complying with state regulations. His bill would temporarily reduce the tax burden on licensed businesses. There are reports that only 10% of the 1,700 cannabis dispensaries in Los Angeles are properly licensed.

Congressman Jared Huffman along with another 38 Members of Congress from both parties sent a letter to FEMA to drop a claim against PG&E and its settlement to pay survivors of the 2017 and 2018 Northern California wildfires. The multi-billion dollar fund agreed to by the utility company so thousands still without a permanent home can rebuild. Those signing including Mike Thompson say they think FEMA shouldn’t be trying to recoup any money as its owed first and foremost to survivors still trying to rebuild their lives. They say it could undermine FEMA’s reputation as an honest and fair partner.

A community meeting is set by the Mendocino County Board of Supervisors Cannabis Ad Hoc Committee in Laytonville. The community meeting is an update and for the public to be able to share any recommendations they have for the Ad Hoc Committee on possible changes to the County’s Cannabis Cultivation Ordinance. The board had asked the Committee to review the Ordinance and report back with possible revisions to streamline certain requirements. The meeting is Wednesday at 6:00 p.m. at Harwood Hall.

The new Mendocino County census website has been launched. ‘Mendocino Counts! 2020 Census’ at http://www.mendocinocounts.org. The county says it has all sorts of excellent resource information about the 2020 Census which officially starts April 1st. It happens every decade to see how many members of Congress a state can have. It also informs how more than $675 billion in federal funding should be shared amongst the counties in Calif. The website is in both English and Spanish, featuring a frequently asked questions section. There will also soon be a link to the online census questionnaire and a phone number for other questions. Right now they’re accepting job applications through the site.

At a meeting of the Lakeport City Council, they’ll discuss applying for state grant money to improve park bathrooms. The meeting tomorrow night at City Hall where the Public Works Director is set to ask the council to adopt a resolution so the City Manager can send in a grant application to the Division of Boating and Waterways for just over $184,000 to pay to replace the bathrooms at the First and Third street boat ramp. They also want a public hearing regarding the Community Development Block Grant program and to discuss an application which asks for up to $3,500,000. The meeting will also cover storms and the recent public safety power shutoffs.

An Air Force serviceman who ran away from court-martial proceedings in Las Vegas is dead. The Mendocino County Sheriff’s office reportedly got into a standoff with a 32 year old serviceman after the Air Force requested help. They say he shot himself outside a car after a chase Sunday morning that ended in Redwood Valley. The court martial was taking place last Friday at Nellis Air Force Base in Las Vegas. Before the airman was sentenced, he ran from authorities, so a warrant was issued for his arrest. The CHP tried nabbing him outside Ukiah, but he wouldn’t stop. Air Force Special Agents tried finding him on Reeves Canyon Road, where they located his Jeep Wrangler. Deputies got back up with a drone, which saw a person inside the vehicle. Then a single shot was heard. A SWAT team came out and found the man on a hill near the jeep dead from a gunshot out of a high-powered rifle.

(UPDATE)

On 01-20-2020 the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office Coroner’s Division was able to contact the wanted service member’s legal next of kin and notify them of the his death.
The wanted service member’s identity is releasable to the public and he has been identified as Kevin A. Larson (34 year-old male from Las Vegas, Nevada).

A special meeting of the Lake County Board of Supervisors and department heads has been called. On Wednesday morning the meeting on revenue generation and economic development for future sustainability. It’s happening Wednesday at 9 a.m. at the Lower Lake Town Hall on Main St.

An accident has taken the life of a man trying to cross Highway 101. The man hit at Burke Hill was declared dead on the scene near Ukiah. Paramedics tried CPR to no avail. The man reportedly waving his arms as he tried walking across the northbound lane. A truck hit him going at least 65 mph.

A special event planned in Covelo two years after a local woman disappeared after a fight with her ex-boyfriend. The event for Khadijah Britton a day after the two year anniversary of her disappearance. There have been searches continuing and flyers and banners up across the area where she vanished. There’s also a reward of more than $100,000 for information on where she may be and that could lead to an arrest. The event at the Rec Center at 1 p.m. on Saturday, February 8th with guest speakers, food, a silent auction, and more. The young woman last seen being shoved into a car at gunpoint by her ex, Negie Fallis, who has been sent to prison on a felony firearm possession charge in a separate case connected to Britton.

A woman in Calpella has been arrested after reports of a domestic violence incident. The Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office reports getting a call, but say they didn’t notice any obvious disturbance. Then about fifteen minutes later, they got a call to Ukiah Valley Medical Center to look into a domestic violence dispute in the Calpella area and found a 27 year old man and 13 year old girl being treated. The man said he was dating 22 year old Jessica Pingree who was attacking him and when the 13 year old tried to intervene, she was also attacked. So Pingree was arrested for domestic violence battery and willful cruelty to a child and booked on $25,000.00 bail.

A man in Boonville’s been arrested after reports of a domestic violence incident. Mendocino Deputies responded December 23rd after a woman says she was attacked by her husband Lamberto Magnaperez,. She also told deputies the man had been abusing her for two years. Deputies spoke to Magnaperez and say they developed probable cause to believe Magnaperez’s wife. He’s charged with domestic violence battery and was booked into Mendocino County Jail where he was held on $25,000.00 bail.

A young woman in Ukiah’s been arrested after reports a man was seen banging on someone’s front door, holding a gun. Mendocino deputies say they spoke to 18 year old Natalie Carrascosantana who they say told them there was no disturbance and she didn’t see anyone with a gun. Her boyfriend was found inside and gave deputies a different story. They ended up arresting Carrascosantana for domestic violence battery against her boyfriend.  Deputies found a gun in the home, but say there was no evidence it was used in the incident. Carrascosantana was being held on $25,000.00 bail.