Morning News for Friday, March 8th
Despite the opposition of the Lake County Supervisors, the Fish and Game Commission Wednesday voted to move ahead with whether to give state endangered species status to the Clear Lake hitch.
This begins a yearlong process to study the hitch’s situation.
Several Lake County residents traveled to the hearing to give testimony, including Tom Smythe, a county water engineer; Peter Windrem of the Chi Council; Lake Farm Bureau Director Claudia Street ; and environmental directors for both the Habematolel Pomo and the Big Valley Rancheria.
Jeff Miller of the Center for Biological Diversity, who submitted the petition also was on hand to speak .
Just how the process is carried out from this point forward, and how the public can participate, will be the subject of the next Chi Council meeting on March 27, Windrem said.
The meeting will take place at 3:30 p.m. Wednesday, March 27, at the Agricultural Center, 883 Lakeport Blvd., Lakeport.
The Humboldt County Board of Supervisors unanimously directed staff to plan community meetings in the southern and eastern parts of the county to gather public input on a draft outdoor marijuana cultivation ordinance which would consider outdoor grows a nuisance unless registered with the county, and would be designed to reduce environmental harm from unregulated water withdrawals, dumping and the use of rodenticides, according to a staff report.
Attorney Kathleen Bryson, who defends marijuana cases, said she couldn't imagine people voluntary registering for a program.
Rather than incur the problems Mendocino County has, Humboldt modeled the draft outline ordinance largely after a Tehama County registration-based ordinance.which has been withstood legal challenge.
By not clearing vegetation before the beginning of the Migratory Bird season, CalTrans has placed the timely start of the bypass project in jeopardy. Protestors monitoring the work called attention to possible nesting activity so the Department of Fish and Wildlife stepped in.
CalTrans delayed the start of the tree and vegetation removal until after the birds began to arrive. The protection of migratory bird nesting sites is neither new or a specialized requirement specifically for the bypass project.
CalTrans was well aware that removing vegetation in winter is optimal.
CalTrans now believes it has received approval from Fish and Wildlife on its revised process for spotting and monitoring nesting bird activity. According to Naomi Wagner of Earth First!, Cal Trans' Phil Frisbie told her CalTrans expected to return to the job site Thursday to conduct these new surveys.
The presence of any bird nest along the construction corridor will require CalTrans to mark the nest location and to cordon the area off to prevent disturbance until the young birds have hatched and flown away.
Wagner promises concerned citizens will be monitoring the situation.
Meanwhile SOLV continues to provide guided tours of the Bypass route every Sunday at 1 pm at the Grange. Non violence training is available.
As of Friday, the Ukiah Fire Department is no longer sending ambulances to incidents, responding instead with personnel on fire trucks.
Most patients will be transported to the hospital by either Ukiah Ambulance or VeriHealth.
However, a man injured Tuesday night was transported to Ukiah Valley Medical Center by a city ambulance.
UFD Chief John Bartlett explained that the city kept one ambulance licensed and ready at the fire station on Seminary Avenue just in case a serious incident occurred when all the other ambulances were already engaged.
Bartlett said four ambulances will be in the area, one in Willits and three in Ukiah. With five ambulances, one will be in Hopland, and with six, one would be in Redwood Valley. (It is expected that Ukiah
Ambulance will be adding vehicles soon.)