Ignorance, arrogance, greed and entitlement….same ol’ same ol’

Hall Creek/ Glendale area of the Mad River

What’s up with our elected officials and appointed boards?
If it involves Cannabis Production it must be a great opportunity to cash in and we can tax the hell of it so let’s let them do whatever and use whatever polluted industrial site they want. Win-Win right? That seems to be the mentality of the regulators.
Then you have the greedy proponents who just want to get started printing money. We don’t care what was there before besides don’t you know who we are?
Actually, no we don’t, and it doesn’t matter. Pollution is pollution we don’t want it in our water whether it’s from Mercer Fraser or some hipster growers.

At the September 5 Planning Commission meeting, the County Planning Commission approved yet another permit for a development on the site of a former lumber mill without adequate soil sampling – this one is in Glendale, near Hall Creek and the Mad River – just upstream from the drinking water supply for 88,000 people. The Humboldt Bay Municipal Watershed joined Humboldt Baykeeper in calling for dioxin testing, but the majority of Commissioners waved those concerns away.

Daniel Mintz covered this for KMUD news listen here:  https://soundcloud.com/kmudnews/lack-of-dioxin-testing-at-mill-site-triggers-alarm

Genocide and extinction or the “Western way of life” suffers a setback over the Grizzly Bear

Trump sycophant and Wyoming Republican Liz Chaney a genuinely bad person and daughter of war criminal Dick Chaney

The evil spawn of “dark lord Vader” aka Dick Cheney – “Liz Cheney is very upset that the Indigenous people whose land was taken have interfered with the people who took the land.”

Native tribes and their supporters on Friday defended their push for the continued inclusion of the grizzly bear of Yellowstone National Park on the endangered species list after evil Republican Liz Cheney claimed the protection of the bear violates the so-called “Western way of life.” (Better known as manifest destiny or cultural and physical genocide)

The magnificent grizzly bear was officially returned to the list created by the Endangered Species Act (ESA) on Tuesday, nearly a year after a federal judge found that the Trump administration had exceeded its authority when it attempted to remove the species.

“I would remind the congresswoman that at the time of the Lewis and Clark Expedition an estimated 100,000 grizzly bears roamed from the Missouri River to the Pacific Coast…Now there are fewer than 2,000 grizzly bears and our people live in Third World conditions on meager reservations in the poorest counties in the U.S. Does she really want to talk about ‘destroying’ a ‘way of life’?”—Tom Rodgers, The Rocky Mountain Tribal Leaders Council (RMTLC)

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) sought to allow trophy hunters to shoot the Yellowstone bears, whose population in the park is just over 700, and to open up the public lands for fossil fuel industries. Native tribes including the Crow and Northern Cheyenne tribes joined with the Humane Society and Wildearth Guardians to fight the administration.

When the bear was officially returned to the list this week, Wyoming Republican and Trump suck-up Liz Cheney claimed that the so-called “radical” groups were “intent on destroying our Western way of life” and had pushed for a rule that was “needless and harmful to the ecosystem.”

The Rocky Mountain Tribal Leaders Council (RMTLC), which testified at a congressional hearing in May on the Tribal Heritage and Grizzly Bear Protection Act, took issue with Cheney’s suggestion that her fellow hunters and oil company profiteers desire to capitalize off of the demise of the grizzly bear should trumps the heritage of native tribes and the need for biodiversity.

“So, in striving to protect our culture, our religious and spiritual freedoms, our sovereignty, and our treaty rights—all of which are encapsulated in the grizzly issue—we are ‘destroying’ Cheney’s idea of the ‘Western way of life’?” Tom Rodgers, a senior adviser to the RMTLC, told Native News Online.

I would remind the congresswoman that at the time of the Lewis and Clark Expedition an estimated 100,000 grizzly bears roamed from the Missouri River to the Pacific Coast,” he added. “That was all Indian Country. Now there are fewer than 2,000 grizzly bears and our people live in Third World conditions on meager reservations in the poorest counties in the U.S. Does she really want to talk about ‘destroying’ a ‘way of life’?” asked Rodgers.

Progressive congressional candidate Mckayla Wilkes was among the critics who took to social media to slam Cheney’s comments, calling them “absolutely surreal” considering the centuries-long and continued destruction of Native tribes’ “way of life” by numerous government policies.

from common dreams and raw story

Just in case Examiner readers have forgotten the Great Grizzly Bear commonly roamed free in California at the time of statehood

The California grizzly bear (Ursus arctos californicus) is an extinct subspecies of the grizzly bear, the very large North American brown bear. “Grizzly” could have meant “grizzled” (that is, with golden and grey tips of the hair) or “fear-inspiring” (this is actually spelled “grisly”). The last known physical specimen of a California grizzly was shot and killed in Fresno County in 1922.
Two years later, the last wild California grizzly was spotted several times in Sequoia National Park and then never seen again. So-called “Civilized man” had made California’s official animal officially extinct by 1924.

a set back for the monster hotel project in Trinidad

Better than the old drawing but still ugly in the context of its location and size

The Bureau of Indian Affairs’ (BIA) attempted an end run around the public by demanding at hearing in San Diego rather than Humboldt, That didn’t work so good as they suffered a set back at the Coastal Commission, for now.

The Trinidad Hotel project was heard at the California Coastal Commission meeting in San Diego. The Commission seems to want to say yes to the project but because of strong local objections and arrogance from the BIA, they rejected the Hotel plan as presented. The two points that were cited were visual impacts and no viable source of water for the hotel.

While the Coastal Commission acknowledged the broad public opposition the project but seemed inclined to approve the project.

In beauty is in the eye of the beholder moment Trinidad Rancheria CEO Jacque Hostler-Carmesin claimed “Critics seized on a very early, outdated version of the building’s design” except that the new version is as big as the old version they just soften some of its features. It will dominate the view from the bay.

No matter what the public thinks this project may still be moving forward one way or another especially with Ryan Sundberg and Dave Tyson involved

TerraGen’s Wind Project

An important essay from Ken Miller – Opposing TerraGen’s Wind Project


“We all want to stop climate change and make things better. Of course, wind power initially seems like a good idea. But jumping on the first out-of-area project exploits our good will and good intentions, and leaves us with lots of damage, widespread GHG emissions, and some high priced electricity. We have better options.”

The best thing about this proposal is that it can stimulate enlightened debate, which is what this show is doing now.

There’s no argument that we are in a climate emergency, or that we need to act urgently, the disagreement is about reducing our carbon footprint with minimal environmental impacts, and maximal resilience, and this mega-industrial project does none of that.

First of all, no matter how much electricity this thing generates, it is just wrong to put this factory in forested watersheds, native grasslands, and ridges sacred to local Native Americans, essentially forever.

We taxpayers are funding this project with 10 years of tax credits and “accelerated depreciation.” They have to start construction this Fall to get those tax benefits, so we taxpayers are also funding a rush job, and a con job.

We have time to exercise informed judgment so that

we avoid trading one bad situation for another that leaves us with the impacts, forever. There have only been two public scoping sessions last August in Eureka and Scotia, and few know about this.

Is there a better way to reduce our carbon footprint than this? Of course, conservation and rooftop solar will not destroy our ecosystems, add no new transmission lines, can be implemented quickly, and will provide resilience, an appetite for electric vehicles, and improved property values, all with minimal maintenance, plus homegrown jobs all over the county.

.This project, however, promises only 15 permanent jobs, likely by imported workers, and requires continuous maintenance because these windmills are very complex machines that fail dangerously and often, especially in untested terrain like ours.

This project defiles redwood and Doug fir biomes that are supposedly managed to protect and regenerate ecosystem values.

With an industrial complex of this magnitude, that’s impossible because of the industrial infrastructure:


Without including the mining, manufacturing, and delivery of these huge complex machines, the scale is enormous for our area:

  • Up to 60-600 ft vibrating blenders with 250 foot blades rotating at 200mph at their tips,
  • lubricated with 400 gal of oil,
  • on bases of concrete 65 ft in diameter 10 feet into the ground, and those will never come out all the way
  • on squares of scraped ground 350 ft,
  • 6 250-400 ft meteorological towers
  • 17 miles of new permanent roads some 200 feet wide
  • up the impaired Jordan Creek watershed
  • over 25 miles of 100 ft wide, 90-acre clearcut corridors thru forestland to Bridgeville across the Eel River
  • kept clear with herbicides to support transmission lines
  • constant human activity for 30 years, or more,

That’s operational, the construction activities include:

  • using 15000 gal of water a day,
  • 10000 truck trips, some weighing 110 tons and 90 feet long,
  • 2 temporary bypasses on 101 at Hookton and 12 St Fortuna
  • over 11000 yards of concrete from 1-2 new dirty cement batch plants fueled by generators,
  • 3 million cu ft of soil displaced, soil that now stores C better than trees in wildfire CA
  • erosion into Eel R tributaries
  • Over 25 acres of temporary and permanent staging and Operations facilities
  • 900 acres of logging
  • Plus re-doing all the tie-ins at Bridgeville,
  • And battery banks in Bridgeville (4.4, T4-2)
  • all fueled, from mining to twirling, with fossil fuel energy.

Green House Gases (GHG)

This is neither green, nor renewable. TerraGen’s GHG emissions tally is misleading.

The immediate GHG emissions during the 18 months of construction have instant and prolonged impacts, but TG amortizes them over 25 years, so they look good compared to fossil generating plants…on paper.

(It’s called front-loading. Maxxam did that with their Sustain Yield Program, cut everything now based on mythical growth and yield numbers, but really based on producing pecker-poles and fiber, not forests.)

And they dismiss the emissions associated with all the logging.

Windmill complexes require daily constant monitoring and maintenance, lots of human activity and truck traffic every day, forever: parts fail, rotors catch fire, transformers fail, structures fail, lubrication, Transmission lines require herbicides and maintenance to prevent fires. GHGs from these are hard to discern from this DEIR.

135MW is a lot of power but constitutes only ½ of 1% of California’s renewable portfolio.

Impacts and GHG emissions from decommissioning this Project are not analyzed, and not included in the accounting.

(To date, no wind factory has been decommissioned, dismantled, and the footprint restored.  There are acres of abandoned wind farms throughout California.)

Scotia, Fortuna, Rio Dell, the Eel R valley, and over to the coast will all live with windmill blight for decades.


* A Rube Goldberg machine is a machine intentionally designed to perform a simple task in an indirect and overcomplicated fashion.

We suffer all the impacts from building this complex at this fragile site in order to send power to the grid so that Marin County and others, like Humboldt, can buy that power back, plus pay increased transmission costs, in order to check off a box in our Counties’ renewable agenda. This is a classic Rube Goldberg.

Marin County, which will buy this electricity, has no windmills because they cherish their landscape, especially their ridges.

(CEQA allows highly paid responders to pick each impact as if there is no whole to the landscape and fragment a project to insignificance on paper, like a magic trick.)

Environmental Impacts

Two of the consequences of this rush job are that Wildlife surveys are shortened from the required 2 years to one year, and public awareness and discussion have been limited even more.

This project kills some of the iconic species that make this place wild, including Marbled Murrelets, Eagles, raptors salmonids, and an array of other birds, fish, mammals, amphibians, reptiles, insects and plants. (3-5b)

Some will say that millions will die anyway from climate change, and we have no time for solar. Nuclear proponents make this same argument. This project’s immediate and ongoing GHG emissions not only worsen heating, but guarantee the collapse of this local ecosystem.

One of the subtle, unevaluated, but far-reaching ways giant windmill complexes disturb the environment and affects all living creatures is by extracting energy from the wind.

This alters the downwind dynamics over a wide area that affects wind patterns, humidity, and temperature, affecting all life.

The Marbled Murrelet (MaMu)

The Marbled Murrelet section of the DEIR provides a window into TG’s tobacco science:

The marbled murrelet is a magically elusive endangered seabird who relies on both our coastal ocean waters and OG conifer nesting habitat.

There’s only 15% of their original nesting habitat left, and since 1993, there’s been a 20% decline mostly due to logging on private lands. (PSG)

90% of their original population is gone, with a 30% decline from 2000-2010, which continues at 4-7% annually.

California’s populations were federally listed as endangered in 1991, and Oregon just up-listed their populations to endangered recently.

At this rate, Murrelets are heading toward extinction within 30-50 years.

We taxpayers paid over a half billion 1999 $$ to protect their OG habitat with the old PL HCP.

Yet according to TG’s DEIR, this project will affect over 2200 acres of murrelet activity, and that’s just the actual physical buffers around this complex.

And the complex is within a quarter mile of murrelet habitat, right in murrelet airspace, violating the one-mile PSG buffer.

Since there are no operational windmills within the murrelet’s range, anywhere, TG plays a modeling game with our at-risk population.

Based on a tiny sample of 136 birds detected over 5 months of radar surveys, Stantec Corp concludes, with mathematical precision, that only 10.43- 20.86  murrelets will die over 30 years.

Changing a collision input by just .01 into their computer model accounts for the doubling of the calculated mortality rate.

A model so sensitive to tiny changes in inputs is unreliable when modeling the many tiny variables associated with murrelets, climate change and windmills.

With poor breeding success rates and degraded ocean conditions and OG habitat, there are absolutely no acceptable murrelet deaths.

There are, of course, no real mitigations, either, so TG relies on the Parks to thin over 20,000 acres in their forests to recruit OG murrelet nesting habitat, (meaning 100-250 acres of continuous OG), which would take centuries, and emit tons of GHGs in the process, besides eliminating those trees’ carbon storage capacity.

In other words, their mitigations rely on more logging, in addition to the 900 acres that will be logged for the project, also without GHG accounting (Appx B).

The mitigations and alternatives in this DEIR are of the Titanic variety, moving turbines around on the ridges, or modifying utility poles somewhere else to make up for killing local eagles.


I encourage everyone to read Adam Canter’s eloquent description of Bear River and Monument Ridges (Tsakiyuwit), on LoCo, May 16. You will think quite differently about whether this project fits this landscape.

At 3100 feet overlooking the Eel R valley, these ridges, are the traditional cultural property of local Tribes, irrespective of current legal ownership.

One ridge over is Rainbow Ridge, where there is the most pristine old growth Doug fir forests and bio-diverse ecosystems left on the planet.

These native grasslands are part of the Mendocino IBA habitat, where TG will cut 36 acres of the “eel grass of the hills”


My LA friend said that anyone supporting a wind complex should visit one. I don’t call it a farm, because the only resemblance to a farm is to a CAFO feedlot (Concentrated animal feeding operation). These are massive, all-disturbing, unfriendly no-critter industrial zones.

Maybe windmill complexes are OK where they already are, especially where communities want them, but not in this location. We shall see about offshore wind energy soon enough.


The real winners here are neither we, nor the planet.

The only thing renewable and green is the money game.

The Russ Ranch and HRC get 30-year, renewable leases, without doing anything, and TerraGen, owned by Energy Capital Partners (ECP), a $20B venture capital consortium, gets 10-year tax credits and a quick write-off of expenses no matter how these windmills perform; plus of course selling the power back to us with increased transmission costs.

We are supposed to trust ECP & Stantec Corp., who is doing wildlife surveys here. They are both heavily into international oil and gas, coal mining, fracking, shale and tar sands oil, pipelines everywhere, transmission lines, and the giant equipment used to haul turbine components.

The County gets a measly $2m a year, which can sound like a lot compared to other taxpayers only because TPZ lands pay so little in taxes.



So why would we exchange so much for so little gain? Is this the sacrifice we must make in order to “do our part?

Of course not.

Conservation is cheap, readily available and easy.

Distributed energy production, solar panels on every roof and electric vehicles are the ticket to resiliency, renewables, jobs, and a steady revenue stream from money-generating roofs when the cost of the panels is recovered.

Public roofs would feed that money right into our treasury, replacing those that would come from this project.

Solar panels have impacts, but the scale is orders of magnitudes less, the impacts are far more manageable, there is negligible maintenance, the roofs and wires are already in place, and they provide us with way more benefits and jobs without the destruction.

This project is a con job that benefits mainly TerraGen and its partners.

The overall environmental costs and the ecosystem impacts make this a terrible choice for our county and for our planet.

(of manufacturing, delivering, constructing, installing, operating, maintaining, and decommissioning this huge industrial complex,)


We can’t rely on CEQA, or the County at this time to protect us and steer us onto a smarter course. The agencies are well aware of this environmental disaster, but they need our support in their efforts to protect our precious ecosystems. Otherwise all they hear is from TG, and the County

This momentous decision, with widespread impacts of public concern, is in the hands of an unelected Planning Commission just because it’s on private lands, depriving us of our democracy.

There is no panacea, just better choices.

Please contact the Planning Commissioners,

July 11 Planning Commission workshoppe

July 25 Planning Commission hearing

contact California Department of Fish Wildlife, US Fish &Wildlife Service, NOAA.

Encourage organized labor, the media, local environmental groups like Audubon, FoER, EPIC, NEC, ERRP, CATS,

Speak up, this is not a done deal

Citizens Scotia meeting June 3 630 Winema Theater

June 5 comments to DEIR

Contact your Planning Commissioner: https://humboldtgov.org/194/Planning-Commission

Attend the meetings with the planning commission and let your Supervisor know that this project is unacceptable, another rip off our public trust values.  Demand the Supervisors start the solar program where everyone can benefit and no harm comes to our precious hills and valleys, streams and rivers.


“To protect wild habitats and prevent the worst cataclysm of global heating, we must move to zero-carbon energy immediately – but we must do it in ways that minimize habitat destruction. That requires that energy is generated in our towns and cities, close to where we use it.” Dr. Doug Karpa, PhD, JD, Marin energy analyst

One energy analyst sums it up:

…wind farms are now recognized as mostly having a negative effect on local resilience other than financially benefiting a very small group of people.

The main benefit local inhabitants get is merely the very dubious feel good privilege of looking at the wind turbines.” Roger


Trump is taking a sledgehammer to the Clean Water Act

Trump said he wants to see “crystal clean water” in the United States. but, his administration is going to release a plan to roll back Clean Water Act protections on millions of acres of waterways and wetlands that do not flow year-round — the nature of many upstream waters in California and the arid West

Trump administration poised to strip protections from up to two-thirds of California streams and millions of acres nationwide

Trump’s plan is to vastly scale-down the Clean Water. Administration officials said nearly two years ago that they had begun the process of reversing the rule

This signals that the Environmental Protection Agency intends to strip federal protections from many of the nation’s wetlands and streams that do not flow year-round. The administration has not challenged the accuracy of the talking points.

At stake are billions of dollars in potential development rights, the quality of drinking water for tens of millions of Americans and rules that affect farming in much of the country, as well as wildlife habitat for most of the nation’s migratory birds and many other species.

Under Trump’s plan, the Clean Water Act’s protections would no longer apply to most seasonal ponds, wetlands and streams, including those that form major parts of drinking-water systems and fisheries throughout the nation, particularly in the arid West. As many as 1 in 3 Americans drink water derived in part from seasonal streams that may no longer get protections, according to scientific studies the Obama-era EPA relied on in writing the original rule.

In California, where many significant stretches of fresh water dry up in the summer, as much as 66% of the state’s freshwater streams could lose federal protection. The waters would continue to have protection under state law, but few states are in position to replace the regulatory systems currently run by federal officials.

Trump administration officials reject the federal data that show as many as 66% of the freshwater streams in California — and 81% in the arid Southwest overall — could lose Clean Water Act protection, saying the Obama EPA lacked enough specifics to back up that estimate.

“The Trump administration’s plan would preserve protections for some seasonal streams that regulators would classify as “perennial and intermittent tributaries to traditional navigable waters.” Protections would also be preserved for wetlands adjacent to navigable waters.

Administration officials have declined to specify how many streams fall into the “intermittent” category.

The issue that has generated battles through four consecutive administrations involves how far upstream the government’s reach can extend.

Environmentalists have pushed to extend protections to seasonal waters, seeing them as key resources for healthy ecosystems. Agricultural and real estate interests have pushed back hard, complaining of intrusions by heavy-handed bureaucrats.

Farmers have argued the rules could force them to get costly and cumbersome permits just to dig a drainage ditch. Developers warned the new restrictions could needlessly complicate home building.

They are joined by mining and oil companies seeking to limit the reach of environmental rules that hold the firms accountable for industrial activities disrupting streams and wetlands.

“You can’t protect the larger bodies of water unless you protect the smaller ones that flow into them,” said Ken Kopocis, who is a former chief at the EPA. “You end up with a situation where you can pollute or destroy smaller streams and bodies, and it will eventually impact the larger ones.”

All of the historic federal water cleanups have involved repairing damage that was done to intermittent streams flowing into a major navigable river or lake, he said.

Environmental groups warn the new Trump rules would restrict the EPA from any enforcement, leaving the job entirely to the states and giving some of the most crucial bodies of water the least amount of protection they have had in decades.

“It is hard to overstate the impact of this,” said Blan Holman, managing attorney at the Southern Environmental Law Center, an advocacy group.

“This would be taking a sledgehammer to the Clean Water Act and rolling things back to a place we haven’t been since it was passed. It is a huge threat to water quality across the country, and especially in the West.”

Edited from the Los Angeles Times

BIA Denies Extension for Public Comment on Proposed 6-story Trinidad Casino-Hotel


The proposed six-story, 100-room casino hotel atop the bluff on Trinidad Bay.

BIA Denies Extension for Public Comment on Proposed 6-story Trinidad Casino-Hotel

The federal Bureau of Indian Affairs in Sacramento has denied any extensions in the standard 30-day public comment period for a consultant’s 500-page Environmental Assessment (EA) of the Trinidad Rancheria’s proposed six-story, 100-room casino hotel atop the bluff on Trinidad Bay.

HARP (Humboldt Alliance for Responsible Planning), on behalf of residents, and the City of Trinidad had requested the extension to give the public more time to evaluate the complicated environmental report, and respond to its sometimes conflicting facts and claims.

The BIA’s Harold “Dan” Hall emailed HARP attorney Bryce Kenny on Thursday in response to the extension request, saying, “there will be no extension granted beyond the current 30-day review and comment period.”

“We are dismayed on behalf of Trinidad and Humboldt residents that this huge construction project, which will so radically alter some of the most beautiful and pristine coastline in America, is being fast-tracked without adequate opportunity for input from the public,” HARP said in a statement released today.

The deadline for public feedback on the hotel proposal is Oct. 22, 2018.

Meanwhile, the Trinidad City Council will hold a special public meeting with Rancheria officials to discuss the hotel plan on Monday, Oct. 15, 5-8 p.m. at Trinidad City Hall.

The lengthy Environmental Assessment of the casino-hotel project can be found at https://trinidad-rancheria.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/09/TREDC-Hotel-EA_REV_Public-Release-Draft.pdf. HARP officials and Rancheria officials themselves said at last week’s public informational meeting, which drew 100 residents, that the report is flawed, inaccurate and inconsistent.

The BIA’s decision on the extension makes moot the petition circulated by HARP and signed last week by some 70 Trinidad-area residents, asking for more time to evaluate and discuss the plan.

HARP representatives reiterated concerns about the hotel’s projected demand for nearly 19,000 gallons of water per day, apparently from Trinidad’s municipal water system, treatment of wastewater from the hotel, and the impact of the building and its wastewater on the sandy bluff above Trinidad Bay.

Public comments on the proposed hotel development must be received by the BIA by Monday, Oct. 22, at: Bureau of Indian Affairs, 2800 Cottage Way, Sacramento, CA 95825 (916) 978-6000. The lead officials are Chad Broussard (chad.broussard@bia.gov) and Harold “Dan” Hall (harold.hall@bia.gov).

For more information, contact HARP at rfjbrr@gmail.com or tedpeasemedia@gmail.com. Or visit HARP on Facebook.

Pro “Dams on the Eel” Fennell trying to pull a fast one at tomorrow’s Supervisors meeting

Image result for Potter Valley Project

The Potter Valley Project

Last week, PG&E finally publicly announced its intent to auction the Eel River dams/Potter Valley Project this Fall.

Also last week, Friends of the Eel River learned through a series of Public Records Act requests that Humboldt County Supervisor Estelle Fennell and her fellow Eel Russian River Commissioners (county supervisors from Sonoma and Mendocino counties) have held a series of at least five secret meetings with PG&E over the last year to put together a plan to keep the Eel River dams in place. They are planning to move the dams out of federal licensing so as to avoid having to provide additional protection for fisheries (passage over 138’ Scott Dam being the main issue here). Under what’s called a “non-power license,” they’d keep operating the project primarily as a water transfer project, but they’d keep the hydropower running as well. They think they’d even get state Renewable Power credit for running these infamous fish-killing dams.

Supervisor Fennell is asking the Humboldt County Board of Supervisors to move TOMORROW to appoint her and Supervisor Bohn to an ad hoc committee that would continue to meet in secret to push this secret plan to avoid protecting Eel River salmon and steelhead. Please, if you can, make time to attend tomorrow’s Board meeting to speak against this move.

As a policy minimum, Humboldt County should be pushing for a solution that would remove Scott Dam and restore fish access to the Eel River headwaters. But at the most fundamental level, we deserve the opportunity to discuss and debate the positions our elected representatives are taking on our behalf. Democracy cannot function when leaders make policy in secret.

We would suggest speakers ask for a full public discussion of the potential options and Humboldt County’s official position on the Eel River dams / Potter Valley Project. We would urge you to request that the Board delay a vote on this proposed ad hoc committee pending such a discussion of costs, benefits, and risks to Humboldt County’s waters and fisheries. Of course, we’d strongly prefer that Humboldt County not be represented by anti-environmentalists like Fennell and Bohn, but that’s probably not a point we’re going to win. We can at minimum demand a transparent process.

The meeting begins at 9am at the usual location in the Supervisors Chambers in the Humboldt County Courthouse. The item is near the end of the agenda, but since they don’t always follow it, we recommend being there by 9:15.

Action Alert from 

Stephanie Tidwell, Executive Director



The Sundberg and Pruitt nexu$

Our very own 5th District Supervisor Ryan Sundberg was reappointed by the Trump administration to the Scott Pruitt run Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Local Government Advisory Committee.

“It is an honor to give direct input to the federal government to protect our environment through the lens of a rural county,”  Sundberg said with a straight face. We’re very sure Ryan’s right at home advising one of the most corrupt political appointees ever Scott Pruitt. No doubt they share the same views on exploiting the Environment for fun and profit

Guest post: Richard Salzman asks, “HAD ENOUGH?”

After reading Daniel Mintz’s article in April 22nd edition of Mad River Union (Madrone: Sundberg swayed by MJ money) I really don’t understand what all the fuss is about regarding Ryan Sundberg’s dependence on big money donations from the mega-grows and other “industrial” cannabis players?

Accusing Sundberg of a conflict of interest seems beyond redundant! Why even bring this issue up, unless it’s being done rhetorically? Ryan Sundberg has been working on behalf of his deep-pocket donors since the day he was first elected. Hell, who do you think recruited him to run in the first place!?

Sure, back when he first ran it may have been mostly the land speculators, realtors and those in the building trades (which, not coincidentally, is the historical purview of Mercer Fraser). Now it includes the legal marijuana industry’s fat cats: mega-growers, suppliers, distributors, industrial extractors, and a whole new crop–no pun intended–of land (and permit-acquiring) speculators. But Sundberg’s been working for them, against the interest of the average citizen from day one.

Nothing demonstrated this more vividly than his appointment of Ben Shepherd to the Planning Commission, which voted 3-2 in favor of letting Mercer-Fraser set up a cannabis extraction plant next to the Mad River. Shepherd pushed back against those who opposed the idea of an extraction venture, which would employ toxicants in its process, being established so close to the source of drinking water for the majority of county residents. Shepherd’s view was that a sewage treatment plant already existed along the river, so why not this.

This, coupled with Sundberg’s work and votes on the General Plan Update, demonstrate he’s more interested in deep pockets than your pockets. He and his fellow majority on the current Board of Supervisors voted for a “plan” that allowed for less housing overall and less environmental protection, but for greater sprawl into areas previously zoned for agriculture or timber so as to now allow for McMansions and ever more river- and groundwater-depleting mega grows. You know, the stuff his donors are doing and want to do more of.

I think State Senator Mike McGuire put it best when he said of Sundberg, “…he’s constantly fighting for the people he works for.” The only part that was not made clear in that statement is that Ryan Sundberg works for “those who brung ‘em,”–i.e., his well-heeled donors. Whether he’s “car-pooling” in their private planes, or just cashing their checks, one thing is clear–minor concerns like clean drinking water for the citizens of the Fifth District is NOT the priority. Maximizing the return on capital, that very much is. No question why big money and industry will vote for him. If one of them is your employer, you may be hoodwinked into believing what’s good for the boss is good for the worker. But for everybody else, why would you if you have another choice?

More backstory on the HCSD Redmond/Indianola annexation push

Last week we covered David Tyson and his shady role on the Humboldt Community Services District. Pretty easy to see why he’s on the board…money!!!!

So why have the other 4 joined up? We can’t say for sure but given all their backgrounds it seems as if they joined………….to make money!!!! Here’s a breakdown of who’s “serving” with good ol’ boy Dave Tyson:

1) Alan Bongio.

He’s the owner of Bongio Construction. He was found to be in violation of laws from the California Water Quality Board. Those violations were on his subdivision being built on Manzanita (unincorporated Eureka near Tyson’s family). Wonder if those road improvements helped Bongio with his subdivision! BTW-that subdivision was pretty controversial with the neighborhood, and given the amount of traffic that will be on Manzanita the $ won’t stop flowing from taxpayer coffer’s until there’s a stoplight there!

Click to access 170110_MaryCourtEureka_NOV.pdf


2) Gregg Gardiner.

Gardiner is the president of the magazine 101 things to do. Gardiner seems to be “semi retired” and into charity/rotary type activities. He’s obviously friends with the local good old boys, such as Matthew Owen and John Fullerton. Or, at least it appears so from this Chiv article:


3) Dave Saunderson.

Saunderson was a construction contractor and owner of Saunderson construction. Ummm, wonder if he’s profited off of road improvements????

4) Frank Scolari.

Scolari was a real estate broker for Coldwell Banker Cutten Realty. Does the HCSD service Cutten you may wonder? The answer is absolutely YES!!! And Frank has been there with hat in hand to sell those HCSD piped homes to the hopeful new homeowners in Cutten. Must be a nice gig with all that inside info on what land will be worth $ after the infrastructure has been paid for by Humboldt Taxpayers.

In case anyone was wondering, the next HCSD meeting is on Tuesday night at 5 PM. They’ll be discussing ripping off taxpayers…ahem….we mean Redmond Road water improvements and annexation of Indianola road.