Monday Morning News for 4/22/13
A federal judge last week agreed to the California Farm Bureau’s request to dismiss its Willits bypass lawsuit against CalTrans and the Army Corps of Engineers. Apparently, the Farm bureau agreed to a settlement with CalTrans and the Corps, details of which have not been disclosed.
When the Farm Bureau joined the lawsuit, its main interest involved the substantial impacts on agriculture . The original E.I.S. claimed only 150 acres of farmland would be affected in Little Lake Valley but "Six years later, the total acreage of farmland affected grew to more than 2,000 acres.
The original four environmental plaintiffs remain parties to the lawsuit.
A petition to recall Lake County Sheriff Frank Rivero was approved for circulation last week, allowing the proponents to begin collecting signatures to have it appear on the ballot.
Registrar of Voters Diane Fridley gave the draft document the OK just hours after the proponents submitted their third set of proposed petitions to her office for review.
The group behind the effort, called the Committee to Restore Integrity, previously filed two petitions but Fridley found errors in both sets, mainly formatting issues.
The recall advocates now have until Aug. 15 to collect 7,026 valid signatures -- 20 percent of registered county voters -- but their deadline is June 17 if they hope to have the recall appear on the November ballot.
The Lake Supervisors will decide whether to order a special election or include the recall as part of a regular election.
A two-day compliance sweep conducted by the Sexual Assault Felony Enforcement Task Force resulted in the arrests of four people considered to be convicted child molesters.
Menndocino County is home to 297 registered sex offenders, 45 in Ukiah, and 15 in Willits.
According to MCSO Sgt. Derek Scott, "People think all sex offenders are child molesters. A person is considered a child predator only when their crime is against someone under 18 such as rape or indecent exposure that earn a person a spot on the Megan's Law website .
Scott noted that about 90 percent of the victims of sexual crimes know the perpetrator, and about half of those perpetrators are related to their victims.
The SAFE task force verified addresses for 87 registered sex offenders whose crimes were against children during the recent sweep. The task force made seven arrests during the sweep, but only one man Pablo Mora, 54, a Ukiah transient was arrested on suspicion of being out of compliance with his sex offender registration requirements.
Deciding the scope of work for an ad-hoc committee on Brooktrails , state certification for HHSA's four investigators and the possibility of the county becoming a signatory on the Russian River Compact are items on the Mendocino Supervisors' Tuesday agenda.
The board will hear a recommendation from the recently-formed ad-hoc committee on Brooktrails . Under Teeter, the county pays property taxes to the districts that get a slice of the county's property taxes. In return, the county keeps late penalties and fees when the taxes are collected.
A rising number of delinquent property taxes spurred the county to remove from Teeter last year the flat taxes that go to the subdivision's fire, water and sewer agencies, with staff warning that keeping Brooktrails on the program would create a liability to the county's general fund. However, the report stated that it may not be cost effective to pursue de-Teetering' the Brooktrails Township."
The committee intends to meet with Brooktrails representatives with a goal of reporting back to the full Board of Supervisors in 60 days.