Although we all tried to watch this past Tuesday’s Eureka City Council Meeting, via the City of Eureka’s website, we were unable to see the much talked about presentation by Chief Mills. Thankfully the North Coast Journal provided a link to the over 3 hour video. The City website only provided 1 hour and 44 minutes of the meeting. Of course it was just an oversight, and not a purposeful decision to try and keep people from watching the whole meeting?
The missing part of the meeting was curious and fairly interesting; many of the goals and plans from almost a decade ago proposed by that Council and Chief were talked about. Those plans sounded reasonable, but obviously there will have to be substantial community input and involvement to get things moving in the right direction in regards to the “homeless problem” solutions in Eureka.
However, the expert spin doctor Police Chief Mills did nothing get our confidence up when he laid out his reasons that Eureka has a “homeless problem”. Chief Mills laid out exactly what he feels caused the houselessness problem in Eureka. Below is the gospel according to Chief Mills:
1) Judges. According to Mills, the number one cause on the list was a “local judge’s decision to increase the amount of sustenance that people got.” We believe he’s referring to the bungled attempt decades ago during the days of Councilman Jim Worthen when the county cut welfare benefits and was offering only in lieu of services a Judge stepped in and restored the cuts and penalized the county by making them pay out more cash, so for awhile Humboldt had one of the biggest cash pay outs in the state. Many seasonal fishing and timber workers relied on general relief during the winter to feed their families
2) Social Services. According to Mills, the second cause was “social service giveaways”. Yes…the Koch brothers mantra was spewed by our local so called “forward thinking” Police Chief.
3) Marijuana industry. According to Mills, the third main cause was all the “trimmers” who come to Eureka and stay around and choose to live as a homeless person. This over used one from the “Good Ol’ Boy” playbook has been played out, as far as we’re concerned.
What a giant load of grade A crap!
If you aren’t concerned that this is the perspective Chief Mills is coming from, you should be. There was no mention of the fact that there is a glaring lack of affordable/safe housing in Eureka. There was no mention of the slumlords who give people “affordable” housing, as long as they are willing to live in unsafe residences not fit for the third world. There was no mention that EPD made a concerted effort for decades to stop the likes of people like Betty Chinn from helping those less fortunate. Actually, it wasn’t until Chief Nielsen that Betty was allowed to help the houseless without EPD interference. Since then, her biggest foes such as Rex Bohn and his ilk have co-opted her cause to garner votes and seem more “progressive” (just ask Republican/Decline to State/Democrat Virginia Bass). The list goes on, but the historical ignorance and current planning seems to be following the same playbook as the “South Spit” relocation.
The “South Spit” worked in a out of sight, out of mind sort of way. There aren’t hundreds of people living in that one area any more. However, whatever happened to those displaced families? Has anyone really looked into the results of those raids? Nope. If they did they would find out that instead of giving people a helping hand, they just “moved folks along”. We have spoken with several of the people living behind the mall. Not surprisingly, may belong to multi-generational houseless families. Several of them actually grew up on the South Spit before being evicted. Those children grew up in the area, and didn’t just melt away or “pull themselves up by their bootstraps”. They made the best of it that they could, and yet still live without permanent shelter, work, or meaningful assistance in….Eureka.
Kim Bergel continued gushing her airhead like full support for Chief Mills and his “agenda”. Listening to her speak, it was apparent that she has fully imbibed the Mills Kool-Aid , and that she also has no real historical knowledge or clue of what has been tried before or what the causes of our “homeless problem” in Eureka truly are.
But that isn’t true for the some of the well connected on the council. We generally like refer to them as the “Brady Bunch”. Both Jager and Ciarabellini thought that using the “South Spit” deportations from the nineties was the best model to use in order to solve the problem. Yeah right! Because that worked out sooo well:
For those not paying attention it seems promising that Chief Mills is using some of the same language that the former Chief Nielsen had used years ago. However, we have to seriously question; Is this just more of the “Silver Tongue Devil” shtick that Andy uses so well in order to obscure his real agenda? We certainly don’t want or need that, but with his track record of BS, outright lies and conservative so called “Christian” ideals, what other conclusion is there?