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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:

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. 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:

If you still have questions, send an email request:

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]

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

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 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.


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.



Birders will be out over the next few weeks in Mendocino County for the annual Christmas-time bird count. The Ukiah Peregrine Audubon Society does this every year as part of a nationwide effort to see what species are around. Last year’s event wasn’t on a particularly good day to spot birds- it was cloudy and misty-but the 50 or so people who show up saw more than 35 thousand birds, including at least two which are considered rare in the Oak Manor Park area. You can learn more at an informational meeting at 7:00 this evening at the Civic Center on Seminary Avenue.

The state is slapping CVS with a big penalty for failure to pay the whole redemption value of recyclable bottles and cans. CalRecycle says 81 of the 848 CVS pharmacies in the state failed to refund the right CRV and so the chain has been docked 3.6 million dollars. It is the biggest penalty in years, according to the consumer group Public Watchdog. Officials say shortchanging even a few cents per container adds up, and amounts to an extra tax on consumers. Many private recyclers have closed because the price they can get for that scrap metal and plastic has dropped dramatically in the past few years. That’s left supermarkets and large stores as the only convenient places for many people to get their cash value back. Large stores without a recycling center within half a mile are required to take back the empties.

Hundreds of PG&E customers in Mendocino and Lake counties are getting ready for an evening in the dark. The scope of the public safety power shutoff isn’t as big as projected 24 hours ago, but it’s cold comfort to 173 customers in Mendocino County and another 12,000 or so in Lake County. The Mendocino Executive office says those outages are along Highway 175 in the Old Hopland area to the Sonoma County line. Lake County says most of its outages are in Hidden Valley Lake and Middletown areas. The power down started around 7:00 this morning and the all clear could come in the wee hours Thursday, with PG&E hoping to inspect and re-energize those lines within 24 hours for everyone.

The utility says the weather has cooperated, with winds not as high as projected and some parts of its service area even getting some badly needed rain. The Red Flag Advisory is still up for interior Mendocino County and much of Lake County until early Thursday. After that, fire weather conditions are expected to fall below threat levels, at least for the next few days.

The PG & E website has an interactive map and updates are being posted on government pages and social media channels.

Residents in Lake County’s Northshore area will have a chance to find out more about plans to slow traffic on Highway 20 in Nice, Lucerne, Glenhaven and Clearlake Oaks. There are actually two identical workshops planned December 4th from 4:00 to 5:00. One is at the Northshore Event Center, in Nice, the other is at the Northshore Fire Station in Clearlake Oaks. Final design work is under way for the project that will improve walking, biking and transit use along that road. The Lake Area Planning Council is involved in the job. A CalTrans grant is paying for it.

A “Neighborfest” has been announced by New Paradigm College, a hands-on planning workshop to be more prepared for emergencies. The event in partnership with North Coast Opportunities at “The Lucerne Castle” next Friday afternoon at 1. The college explains it, as neighbors celebrating together are more prepared for emergencies. Adding it’s designed to help neighborhoods organize their own events and festivals and apply for funding. Those who attend will learn how to plan, fund and host their own event. It’s free, but you have to register, visit:

Willits police say there were no threats to schools, but they’ve had a lock down. A call to the High School yesterday after a rumor a student might have a gun. When cops got there, they found the student was not on school grounds, but the school was placed on lockdown as a precaution just before 11 am yesterday morning. The student was found around 11 and detained. Police say the student had an airsoft pistol which they confiscated. They say there was never a threat and the child never entered school grounds.

The Downtown Streetscape Project in Ukiah is becoming a reality. Nearly a unanimous vote in favor of the project by the City Council. The Daily Journal reports the plan will reduce State street from two lanes to one, with a center left turn lane in each direction. It will also have wider sidewalks, safer crosswalks, new streetlights, more landscaping and benches to sit on. Temporary ramps will be installed for pedestrian access and no businesses will have to close. The project is going out to bid, then it has to come back to the City Council to decide who to work with. Construction is slated to start at the beginning of 2020.

An enthusiastic thumbs up by the Mendocino County Board of Supervisors to start collecting taxes from private campgrounds, RV parks, and tent sites. But that’s not it, as voters also have to approve the transient occupancy tax. Right now there’s a transient occupancy tax for “lodging establishments” for hotels, motels and the like. The election would take place on the presidential primary ballot, March 3, 2020. The county has indicated the tax revenue would be used for fire agencies in Mendocino County and the rest at the discretion of the Fire Chief’s Association.

A planning commissioner has been chosen in Clearlake. 3 people applied for the position and the City Council made their decision last night to appoint Erin McCarrick. She has a decade of experience working in politics and for nonprofits in North Dakota and South Dakota then came to Calif. for grad school. Lake Co News reports she moved to Lake County helping with local hiring after the Valley and Clayton fires. She’s also a consultant and owns two cannabis businesses: Clearlake Ventures, in Clearlake, and Cara Farms, in Potter Valley.

Cops in Lakeport investigating a fake jewelry scam. Several victims approached by a man, described as possibly of Middle Eastern descent, about 5 foot 8, with a thin build and a short beard. The man says he was robbed and all he had left was a gold chain and ring and tried to sell it for $500, stating it’s really worth $3,000. One victim said he only had $128 and says the suspect gave him the jewelry, took his money and took off in a newer black Cadillac Escalade. The jewelry was found to be worthless. The jeweler who appraised it told police 8 different people brought him the same jewelry from people describing a similar situation, describing the same suspect.

Sonoma Clean Power is reportedly investigating what it would take, to take over, PG&E. The company is a public agency supplying renewable energy to Sonoma and Mendocino counties. Its board of directors voted unanimously for staffers to start exploring what it would look like for an acquisition of PG&E power lines and other equipment. It comes after the public safety power shutoffs, numerous deadly fires dating back to 2017 and the utility company’s bankruptcy filing earlier this year. A spokesperson for PG&E says their power facilities are not for sale and changing the company’s structure would not make for a safer operation.

Still no word what caused a fishing vessel out of Fort Bragg to capsize out of Jenner. The family that owned the vessel, Miss Hailee says there were no signs of trouble for the boat that turned over with 4 crew members aboard. 3 were rescued, a fourth has still not been found since their fishing trip last weekend. The man still missing has been identified as Arnulfo “Amigo” Santiago. The boat captain is still recovering from severe hypothermia. The Miss Hailee was a 54-foot wooden vessel built in Fort Bragg in 1970 owned by the Richard Kelley family. The story was that the crew were fishing off Fort Bragg before heading south and ran into trouble. The Coast Guard searched two days with no luck finding the still missing Santiago.

A better look for cell tower infrastructure when it comes to 5G wireless in Fort Bragg. The City Council has approved new aesthetic guidelines for the location and look of infrastructure for 5G wireless technology in city limits. Those at this week’s meeting brought up potential health threats from radiation and even how it might affect the beehives behind the Guest House. The City Manager says they’re following carefully written federal law for how local governments handle 5G technology. Earlier this year the City Council approved aesthetic guidelines for future wireless infrastructure but it was reportedly the only choice from FCC regulations passed in 2018, but they can decide on the look of the technology locally.

The legislature is trying to make it law for municipalities to be able to yank police officer badges for officers with a history of criminal activity or serious misconduct. This comes after an investigation across the state showed more than 80 working cops in Calif. have a prior criminal conviction. So the state public safety committee is considering the matter. The investigation showed California one of only five states that don’t “decertify” an officer for misconduct or revoke their license. The investigation also said some rural departments had a history of hiring the officers, others would not, specifically in the city of McFarland in Kern County where they had a ratio of one in five officers over the last decade, were either sued or fired from another department for misconduct or they’d been convicted of a crime.

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We are heading into this weekend in MUCH better shape than we were at the start of the week. CalFire reports progress at the Kincaid fire, saying it is 64 percent contained and on the Burris Fire, , calling it 94 percent contained, with full containment possible by Sunday. The number of people who can’t go home is also dropping substantially with 5 more evacuation warnings lifted in the Kincaid fire zone in Sonoma and Napa Counties. PG & E calls the public safety shutoff essentially over, but another 24,000 customers in Sonoma County have no natural gas service because of the risk of explosions and may not have their heating and cooking fuel back until Monday.

While the weather conditions have improved with cooler temperatures and no high winds expected, there is no RAIN expected anytime soon either, so officials are urging everyone to remember that even the smallest spark can still set off a major fire. That means things like being careful when using lawnmowers and other power equipment outside and not driving vehicles into dry grass or brush.

The Mendocino County Economic Development and Finance Corporation is offering a way for small business owners recover from this week’s shutoffs and prepare for future events like it that could take a toll on the bottom line. The organization has set up a special loan fund that will offer low interest loans at three percent up to $50,000 dollars for small business to recover losses or invest in emergency preparedness. EFDC director Heather Gurewitz calls it a community service for local business that have gone through though a tough time. There’s information about the loans and the qualifications at the website

A Democratic congressman from California is calling for a public takeover of PG & E, saying the utility is putting its profits and its investors over public safety. Congressman Ro Kahana says the for profit utility model doesn’t work any more. Meanwhile, Govenor Newsom has created a new cabinet level position of energy czar to oversee the state’s utilities including PG & E and fix a system the governor thinks is broken.

Don’t forget it’s FALL BACK to Pacific Standard time on Sunday morning. California is one of several states looking at proposals to end the annual clock-changing ritual. Last year, voters overwhelmingly said YES to Proposition 7 giving the legislature the power to vote on going to Daylight Saving Time year round as long as congress approves. Opponents say a single time would be disrupting and confusing unless the 3 bordering states and Mexico do the same. Meanwhile, firefighting groups say you should also use the time change as a reminder to check to make sure your smoke alarms are working properly.