Tuesday morning news, November 13th
A public meeting is being held to discuss a US Wildlife proposal to protect Clam Beach's snowy plover population by poisoning predatory ravens and crows this Wednesday in McKinleyville at 6 pm at Azalea Hall, 1620 Pickett Road.
More than 70 percent of snowy plover eggs along the California coast have been lost due to crow and raven predation during the last 11 years.
Spokesman Matt Baun said Wednesday's meeting will involve a presentation followed by a question and answer session.
People could expect to see the fenced exclosures on the dunes from late January to August. DRC-1339 kills corvids within one to two days of ingestion,and low concentrations of the avicide are used , so there's little risk of secondary poisonings to animals that scavenge carcasses.
Attempts to trap, haze and scare the corvids have been unsuccessful.
Other voices have suggested that a committee focused on education and creating an overarching plan to manage the corvid population, while helping the snowy plover's numbers, should be the first step.
Officials with Raley's supermarket and union representatives are back at the bargaining table, just days after Safeway agreed to a contract and avoided a strike.
Talks between both sides resumed Sunday morning after the company contacted the union to meet.
Raley's spokesman John Segale issued a statement saying both sides have agreed they won't discuss the talks during the negotiations.
Both sides are at odds over wages and benefits, including Raley's proposal to eliminate health care benefits for retirees eligible for Medicare.
The Willits school board has accepted a recommendation from county Superintendent of Schools Paul Tichinin to stop any more school bond spending, at least for now.
Tichinin told the board the full audit of the district's financial status will be finished next week. The school board scheduled a "community and board study session" Thursday Nov 15th at 3:30 p.m., at the Willits High School cafeteria.
The county office is working on developing options for the board "ideally before Thanksgiving," Tichinin said.
Tichinin described the situation as "very serious." This came about when Linda Williams of TWN uncovered the fact that a $5 million balloon payment was due in 2014 and no one had set aside any money to pay it nor had it been included in the calculation of taxes until now.
Tichinin said that due to the potential and drastic effect of the unbudgeted-for balloon payment on the district's general fund, "we have an obligation to work with you" to protect the fiscal solvency of the district.
There are still free bike lockers available in Willits for those who use a bike to do errands or just enjoy those flat city streets .A person can use one of these lockers for up to a year, rent free, to store a bike in town.
The bike locker is an effort by the city and Willits Action Group to "encourage more local bicycle ridership to reduce automobile trips in town and to encourage healthy living in the community," says project coordinator Mike Aplet. "You need not be a city resident to be eligible."
Operated by the City of Willits, the bicycle lockers are available free of charge. A refundable $20 key deposit is required.