Yuba Sutter counties                                                                          

The Departments of Public Health for Yuba and Sutter Counties confirmed a third case of novel coronavirus (COVID-19) on Sunday, March 22, 2020. This is the third case in the Yuba-Sutter region; the first two cases were reported in Yuba County Saturday, March 21, 2020.

 This newest case, like the previous two, was likely exposed via person-to-person transmission. The individual did visit a neighboring county that had evidence of ongoing community transmission prior to their illness. The individual is doing well.  

 While confirmation of COVID-19 cases has been expected by Public Health officials, they stress the importance of heeding the state’s “stay at home” order, which urges mass social distancing. 

 “While we have been expecting confirmed cases in our community, it is concerning that these cases were exposed via community transmission,” Yuba-Sutter Health Officer Dr. Phuong Luu said. “It is important now more than ever that we all work together – businesses and residents -- to slow the spread of COVID-19 by doing our part to socially distance ourselves from each other.”

 The Department of Public Health has been in contact with those who have come into contact with the three confirmed cases to ensure that this situation is handled appropriately-- including any friends, family members or health care professionals, to assess and monitor them for signs and symptoms of illness. Appropriate measures including isolation or quarantine and if indicated, testing will be made under the direction of Dr. Luu. 

 California residents have undergone their first weekend under the state “stay at home” order, and these three confirmed cases this weekend are a reminder of how important these measures are. Please stay home as much as possible, wash your hands often and well, and isolate yourself in another room if you are sick.

 Though there will be some expected anxiety and curiosity about testing, Dr. Luu would like to advise all Yuba-Sutter residents that “For those with mild cases of COVID-19, confirmatory testing will not change the doctor’s recommendations. For mild cases, the recommendations remain to stay at home, avoid vulnerable individuals, practice good cough/sneeze etiquette, and maintain good hand hygiene.”

 For more information, visit BePreparedYuba.org or BePreparedSutter.org. A bi-county Call Center is also fielding general calls at 749-7700. For information on the state order and state resources, visit COVID19.CA.GOV.

 

Statewide “Shelter In Place”

order replaces Yuba-Sutter directive

A Yuba County press release received March 20, 2020 states: California Governor Gavin Newsom announced a “Shelter In Place” statewide order Thursday, March 19, 2020  that effectively replaced the Yuba-Sutter “directive” just hours before it went into effect.

Under the order, “all individuals living in the State of California (are) to stay home or at their place of residence, except as needed to follow the federal critical infrastructure sectors.”

The statewide order, which went into effect immediately, is a mandate that is enforceable. Businesses that must close include restaurants (except for takeout or delivery orders), bars/nightclubs, entertainment venues, gyms/fitness studios, public events and gatherings, and convention centers.

“Our Yuba-Sutter community needs to take in this information calmly, as our residents were already prepared to be in their homes to reduce the chance of exposure to the coronavirus,” said Yuba-Sutter Health Officer Dr. Phuong Luu. “This is NOT martial law, and nothing has to change overnight. The state’s order has the same guidelines that were in the Yuba-Sutter directive, so you’re all prepared to stay home as much as possible, except for essential activities, to help slow the spread of COVID-19.”

Luu emphasized residents will still be able to take walks, play with their children in the yard, and make necessary trips to grocery stores, banks, gas stations, pharmacies, and laundromats. Residents can also keep appointments with their doctors.

The state established a website to outline the Shelter In Place order and list essential services. It can be found at: covid19.ca.gov

For more information and resources, check BePreparedYuba.org and BePreparedSutter.org.

Yuba County Courts Close

The Honorable Debra L. Givens, Presiding Judge of the Superior Court of California, County of Yuba, has issued Executive Order No. 2, on Friday, March 20, 2020, ordering the immediate closure of the court. Search warrants, emergency protective orders, parole/probation warrants,m protective custody warrants, and any other emergency ex part matters will be handled by an on-call judge.

This closure will remain in effect through April 9, 2020, at which time the situation will be reassessed. Further information can be found on the court’s website www.yuba.courts.ca.gov

by Lou Binninger

 

In San Francisco for a fundraiser on April 6, 2008, democrat candidate for president, Barack Obama slammed working-class voters in the rust belt crippled by job losses. He said, “They get bitter, they cling to guns or religion or antipathy to people who aren't like them or anti-immigrant sentiment or anti-trade sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations.”

 

In New York City on September 9,, 2016 at a fundraiser, democrat presidential nominee Hillary Clinton said, “You could put half of Trump's supporters into what I call the basket of deplorables. Right? They're racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic – Islamophobic – you name it. And unfortunately, there are people like that. And he has lifted them up. He has given voice to their websites that used to only have 11,000 people – now have 11 million. He tweets and re-tweets their offensive hateful mean-spirited rhetoric. Now, some of those folks – they are irredeemable, but thankfully, they are not America.”

 

The majority of rural Northern California citizens were maligned by both Obama and Clinton with their elitest attitudes and remarks. Although Obama and Clinton carried California millions in the north state would be considered part of Clinton’s deplorables and Obama’s guns and religion group slur.

 

Now, Michael Colantuono of Colantuono, Highsmith & Whatley in Grass Valley that represents Yuba County government leaders is trashing conservatives. He posted on social media, “There are none so blind as those who will not see. GOP respondents in rural areas not too concerned yet. Have no faith in the media and are sure the hype is about damaging Trump and the GOP.  Michael G Colantuono Mar 15, 2020.”

 

Colantuono’s firm was hired by Yuba Co. officials to save the Measure K illegal sales tax increase. Not only do Yuba County residents feel their elected representatives and department heads have lied to them and mocked them but these same officials now hire rude liberal loud mouths with taxpayer dollars to polish the county’s image.

 

There is more to Colantuono’s quote. Originally it said, "There are none so blind as those who will not see. The most deluded people are those who choose to ignore what they already know.” The saying has been traced back to John Heywood in 1546.

 

So, who is ‘deluded?’ Colantuono’s law firm tortures the truth to say the county did not pitch the tax as a public safety measure with revenues funneled to a special fund, thereby needing a 2/3rds vote of the electorate to pass. The lawyers are magicians hired to deceive since there are numerous county documents and correspondence saying it was a ‘public safety measure.’

 

Measure K public gatherings conducted throughout the county to groom voters were called ‘public safety meetings.’ Campaign signs touted fire and law enforcement needs. Officials preyed upon the fears of residents that they may not receive timely fire and law enforcement assistance after voting no on the tax.

 

 There were no other county officials on the speaking tour other than those representing public safety along with the district attorney and the county administrator.

 

This campaign was two-faced from the start. Exploit the fears of the people by talking public safety, guarantee the money to a special fund and then call it a general tax thereby needing only a 50% plus 1 vote to win.

 

The deceptive campaign and then the supervisors’ appeal of Judge Stephen Berrier’s ruling (invalidating the tax) that is now costing residents $10,000 a day (to date more than $4,040,000) soured voters in the recent election.

More than 70% (70.74%) of Yuba County voters rejected the Yuba College Measure C bond. The State Proposition 13 school bond was turned down by 73.10%. Wheatland’s High School Measure L was rejected with 57.48 voting no.

 

Supervisor Doug Lofton, longtime resident and former Linda Water District manager lost to a political novice that spent less than $300 on his campaign (Seth Fuhrer 1186 - 53.21% vs. Doug Lofton 1043 - 46.79%). Lofton should ask for a refund from his campaign manager who did not take Fuhrer seriously and misread voter sentiment. 

 

Supervisor Mike Leahy (773 votes -31.62%) may end up third in a three-way race when final totals are posted and miss the run-off against leader Don Blaser (894 votes -36.56%). Stephen Heter received 778 votes or 31.82%. Did any of these three actually campaign? None seemed concerned about winning, but Measure K hurt incumbent Leahy.

 

Yuba Water Agency (YWA) Director Charlie Mathews remained in office by defeating John Nicoletti (53.87% to 46.13%). Mathews’ conservative message “Your Water Your Money,” his business and practical approach to YWA management and his joining the lawsuit to invalidate Measure K helped him.

 

Joe Henderson fell short against Measure K’s voice Gary Bradford (46.91% to 53.09%) due to Henderson’s distracted and distant campaign consultant.

 

However the Measure K appeal case is decided, the Measure’s ongoing controversy influenced the outcome of a number of contests. It has also tainted the confidence of citizens in Yuba County government.

by Lou Binninger

 

There is no other unresolved case creating more suspicion and doubt about law enforcement and the judicial system of Yuba-Sutter Counties than the Sara Matthews Easton death. Did she shoot herself? Was it an accident? Is someone else a suspect? Or, did her husband, Aaron, the former Marysville Chief of Police kill her.

 

The judicial system requires confidentiality before cases are tried and the evidence can be presented in court. Law enforcement investigates but it takes a prosecutor to review the facts and go to trial.

 

In this case both Yuba and Sutter County District Attorney’s offices had conflicts to prosecute. Brian and Amanda Hopper were involved with the Eastons. Amanda Hopper was the Sutter County DA and Hopper’s father, Steve Jones, worked in the Yuba County DA’s office.

 

Then Colusa County District Attorney John Poyner authorized needed search warrants for the investigation and said he would prosecute the crime if it occurred in his county.

 

Today, Yuba City Police Department still has the investigation while the prosecution was left with the state Attorney General’s office. The five year mark is approaching this August 16th with no disclosure as to what happened to Sara. However, some information has surfaced.

 

In the early morning hours on Sunday, August 16, 2015 multiple shots were fired in the Yuba City home of Marysville Police Chief Aaron Easton. Aaron, Sara and their three children were in the home.

 

As emergency personnel arrived, though the back of Sara Easton’s head was blown-off from a bullet wound(s) entering the front right side, she was transported from the bedroom to Adventist Emergency Department and pronounced dead.

 

Aaron Easton arrived at the hospital neatly dressed without a spot of blood on him. Chief Easton made two calls prior to calling 911. He contacted Brian and Amanda Hopper and Jason Garringer.

 

Brian Hopper previously worked with Easton at Yuba County Sheriff’s Department and Garringer currently worked with Easton at Marysville Police Department. The Hoppers refused to come to the scene while Garringer was one of the first to arrive.

 

Amanda Hopper had been a long-time friend of Sara Easton until Sara believed Amanda was having an affair with Aaron. Sara was so distraught that she went to the leaders of her LDS (Latter Day Saints) congregation in Yuba City for help.

 

There were disciplinary procedures for a parishioner violating proper church conduct. Nothing was required of Hopper. Sara felt helpless, abandoned by the leadership and stopped attending services. She was done with church and Amanda Hopper.

 

Sara was married to a serial adulterer and believed that her life was in danger from his increasingly aggressive sado-masochistic sexual behavior. She did not trust her husband away from home and was increasingly fearful about his sexual exploitation of her. She confided in others about Aaron’s dangerous demands, both choking her and taping a bag over her head.

 

Many law enforcement leaders speaking off-the-record believe Aaron killed Sara. Yuba City police investigators say Aaron shot his wife. Some believe Aaron’s behavior following Sara’s death was a classic demonstration of a guilty person seeking to embellish his reputation in order to prepare a defense if accused and arrested.

 

After Sara’s death Aaron was on a mission. He continuously posted photos of Sara and himself on Facebook and arranged a photography exhibit about Sara at the Arts Council in Marysville. Meanwhile, he was already dating another lady.

 

He leveraged giving a $400 car to a single mother into a publicity stunt and appeared on television. He solicited and received policing awards.

 

Why is no agency prosecuting this crime? Who is standing in the way? Some law enforcement people with first-hand knowledge that believe Easton is getting away with murder are afraid to talk. If no prosecution occurs they will die with the details of Sara’s death on their conscience.

 

Few would argue against the code of confidentiality in police work and the judicial process. However, what happens when the system fails victims, their loved ones and the citizens that remain? People then consider their government corrupt and take care of matters on their own.

While there remain no confirmed cases of COVID-19 (novel coronavirus) in Yuba-Sutter at this time, Bi-County Health Officer Dr. Phuong Luu  recommended both county Board of Supervisors declare a state of emergency – a step already taken by 15 other California counties that is necessary to gain access to resources that will help bolster ongoing efforts to respond to the public health threat. The Yuba County Board of Supervisors and Sutter County Board of Supervisors considered her recommendation at their respective meetings on Tuesday, March 10, 2020.  Both boards voted to declare a state of emergency.

 

Dr. Luu and staff from Yuba and Sutter counties believe this is the right time to make the declaration to ensure an appropriate, timely and organized response in the event COVID-19 cases are identified in the bi-county region. Dr. Luu believes it is simply a matter of time before someone in the region tests positive for the virus, so increasing monitoring and responsive capabilities now will further enable public health teams to prevent as much community transmission as possible. 

 

 Staff from both Yuba and Sutter counties have been working closely together to monitor residents who believe they could have COVID-19, communicate plans with area hospitals and health clinics, ensure nurses and first responders have the tools necessary to keep themselves healthy and safe, and communicate important information to the public. A coronavirus preparedness group was established last month, and that group has been in communication with each facet of the community – like schools, hospitals, Beale Air Force Base, and public safety entities – to ensure the area as a whole is equipped with the best knowledge and tools to minimize the impact of COVID-19. 

 

Over the past several weeks of COVID-19 concerns, public health staff from both counties have been operating what is known as a Department Operations Center (DOC) at a low level. The DOC is now elevating to the next level and stepping up efforts to address the health threat. A bi-county Emergency Operations Center based in Yuba County has also opened. This means staff from both counties are working together around the clock to ensure that resources and staffing remain in healthy and reliable supply.

 

A Bi-County Call Center has been established to respond to inquiries from area residents regarding the COVID-19 threat. The Call Center number is 749-7700, and will be open 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. The Call Center is intended to field general questions, not provide medical advice. Please call your primary care physician for medical advice.

Yuba and Sutter counties have been planning for this possibility and staff are properly prepared to handle the work to come. Since there are NO confirmed cases in either county, the approach may look different from Sacramento, Placer, and other counties, where community transmission has been confirmed. Nonetheless, increasing the level of public health response is necessary in focusing vital resources on preventing severe illnesses and deaths.

 

With no confirmed cases at this time, and per California Department of Public Health guidelines, en masse cancellation of schools is not recommended. Schools will continue with measures to prevent spread of COVID-19. The Counties continue to work closely with the Offices of Education in both counties and their respective school districts to plan and prepare our schools for COVID-19 (those CDPH guidelines can be read here).

 

Dr. Luu continues to recommend hand-washing and practicing good hygiene. Vulnerable populations – the elderly and those with chronic illnesses – are encouraged to stay home as much as possible and avoid large gatherings. Keeping yourself from getting sick in the first place remains key in this effort.

 

If you have experienced any symptoms of acute respiratory illness such as fever, chills, or cough and have recently traveled to a country with widespread community transmission (Iran, Italy, China, South Korea), or been in close contact with a patient who has had COVID-19, immediately contact your medical provider by phone – do not go into Urgent Care, the Emergency Room or the doctor’s office. Instead, you should call your personal physician, who can assess whether your illness matches those of COVID-19 and if testing should be completed. If testing is indicated, the physician will then contact Dr. Luu, Bi-County Health Officer for consultation.

 

For more information and resources, check BePreparedYuba.org and BePreparedSutter.org.

Yuba City, Ca.

 

race car legends(Northern California Sports Association)

 

 

 

 

 

    On Saturday, March 21st, four of Northern California’s top racers for the last 40 years, will be coming to Yuba City to be inducted into the Northern California Sports Association’s 50th Annual “Hall of Fame/Scholarship” Dinner.

 

scott

 

 

     Leading the group will be Scott Pruett and Bill McANALLY.  Scott Pruett recently retired from active racing, but has the most impressive record of racing accomplishments.  Racing Go-Karts at the age of 8 he went on to win 10 professional karting championships.  Following that Scott raced Indy cars in the CART Series for 12 years, and highlighted that career as the  1989 “Indianapolis 500” co-rookie of the year.  He then moved to the NASCAR Winston Cup Series for 7 years and raced on the Chip Ganassi team.  Scott eventually won 11 American Sports Car Championships, with 3 Trans-Am Series Championships and 2 IMSA GTO Championships.  He is still actively involved with the Lexus Motorsports Racing team.  Scott and his wife Judy own a wine vineyard in Auburn and are both involved with a successful career in writing children’s book.  Scott and Judy are donating a number of items to be auctioned off at the dinner.

 

        Bill McAnally, who also attended Roseville High, is one of the most established racers and promoters to ever come out of Northern California.  Crowned as the Open-Division NASCAR Racing Champion at Roseville Speedway for over 10 years, and now for over 20 years has directed the racing events at All-American Speedway in Roseville.   Bill also owns a major NAPA Headquarters in Roseville, and runs the NASCAR BMR-NAPA Racing Team out of that location.  The team has 4 of the youngest and most-promising racers on the present circuit.

 

Bill will be bringing one of the race cars to display outside the dinner hall or possibly one of their large traveling trailers to show a segment of their operation.  Also, an auction item at the dinner will be a limo trip to join Bill on a tour of their race in Sonoma this June.

 

       At the “Hall of Fame/Scholarship” Dinner 2 other racers will be honored.  Jerry Bartlett who locally owns Valley Pump, will be inducted for his many championship years in racing, as well as Mel Hall(honored posthumously) for the many years of racing and promoting the Grass Valley Fairgrounds races and Marysville Raceway.  His son Mark Hall will accept his dad’s award.

 

    Other inductees include ex-professional baseball athletes Pat Clements, Darryl Stephens, Larry Prewitt, and Pat Gillick.  An original Oroville native, Pat Gillick was also inducted into the real Cooperstown MLB Hall of Fame in 2011.  The NFL Inductee will be Leon Donahue, who played in the NFL for 9 years for the 49ers and Dallas Cowboys.  Posthumously honored, he will be represented by his family and friends.

 

      Scholarships totaling $15,000 will be awarded to 6 high school students at the dinner.

 

The Northern California Sports Association “Hall of Fame/Scholarship” Dinner will be held on March 21st(Saturday) at the Veterans Memorial Community Building in Yuba City beginning at 5:00pm.  Costs for tickets to the fundraiser will be $40 and can be acquired by calling either Joel Guthrie (530) 329-5851 or John Rice (916)296-1501.  Or donations for the scholarship fund can be sent to  NCSA, P.O. Box 447, Yuba City, CA. 95992

    

by Lou Binninger

 

Colleges in America are in trouble and the recent Yuba College Measure C Bond failure showed their desperate predicament. Colleges are burying future generations with bond debt and current students with loan debt.

Measure C lost in all 8 counties where property owners are saddled with the property tax assessments for 20-40 years to fund Yuba College projects.

 

The California community or 2-year colleges are funded by the state but don’t live within their means so they borrow money via bond measures. Fantastic salaries and pensions for administrators and faculty, along with bloated administrations have financially buried schools.

 

Bond funds are paid back at egregious interest costs over decades by property owners.

 

The fight to defeat Measure C uncovered disturbing facts about the Yuba College system. The Yuba County campus looks neglected even after the 2006 bond funding.

 

The administration deserted the Yuba campus to lease space on Plumas Street in Yuba City for $310,000 per year. And new campuses are being developed in Sutter County and Woodland (Yolo County).

 

Yuba and Sutter voters wonder why a majority of their bond payments are going to a Woodland campus. And, why is maintenance not being done at the Yuba County site? The former Yuba College facilities in Marysville now a part of Marysville High School are still serving students while newer buildings on North Neale Road have been “moth-balled” and are now wet, moldy and in disrepair.

 

Personnel salaries, pensions and benefits have hindered even normal maintenance like paint, plumbing, roofing etc. It is incredible to read that a bond measure would include annual budgeted items like maintenance costs.

The place looks like it is going out of business. Is the long term vision to abandon the Yuba County campus? It looks that way.

 

Schools have become unaffordable for taxpayers and students. It is hilarious to hear about administrators whispering “free” education and being a sanctuary for DACA students (illegals) like schools are a law to themselves. Now, all first year students in California community colleges go “free.” This is a bankrupt California community college system using a last ditch effort to get butts in the seats.

 

There is no “free.” The taxpayer is getting screwed by another government scam.

 

Educational offerings have become irrelevant to today’s student. Most are much better off going to trade schools and working simultaneously to avoid wasting time and the political indoctrination of instructors. The days of “hot dog” liberal teachers mocking young people are coming to an end. Instructors have become intellectual bullies but young people are getting the message that college today is not the answer.

 

Students who take on huge debt to complete school will never come out ahead. Student loan debt is now $1.6 trillion involving 44 million debtors. It is another federal government boondoggle of giving tax money to students, colleges raising tuitions and then spiking salaries for more and more administrators and staff. College presidents know there is a deep taxpayer pocket of funds for student loans.

 

Who needs all the brick and mortar schools anyway? Most of the classes are a waste of time and contribute nothing to a career or good citizenship. Most needed subjects can be offered online where people can study and complete the tests.

 

Tesla inventor-entrepreneur Elon Musk hires based on skill and intellect. Degrees and diplomas are unnecessary. Other Silicon Valley companies like Google and Apple no longer require a college degree.

 

Musk has a personal dissatisfaction with school and says “I don’t care if you even graduated high school. I hated going to school when I was a kid. It was torture.”

 

Conventional schools today are incapable of helping young people develop the knowledge and skills they need to do 21st century work. The old factory model of signaling potential employers by surviving the schooling conveyor belt is sick and dying.

 

Musk realizes what it takes to succeed in the innovation era and it has little to do with conventional schooling. The online coding Lambda School has income share agreements. You can attend for free but the company takes a percentage of graduates’ earnings once they land a high-tech job. If the student does not secure a job then they do not pay. Lambda is receiving 1,000 applications a week.

 

Community colleges are in trouble and bond requests represent extraordinary end of life measures.

By Lou Binninger

 

sara

In 2015, Sara Matthews Easton, a devoted mother of three children, was in a troubled marriage, regretting her choice of a partner and wishing she would have chosen someone like her father.

 

On Saturday night, August 15, 2015, she was with her husband Marysville Chief of Police Aaron Easton at Joe’s Crab Shack celebrating her 32nd birthday. In just a few hours emergency personnel would arrive at the Easton residence to find Sara with gunshot wounds to the head. Her husband and children were in the home at the time.

Law enforcement indicated that Aaron Easton was extended “professional courtesies” at this apparent suicide. They did not approach the scene with the same investigative vigilance as with a regular citizen.

 

However, the scene had been tampered with and three shell casings were found along with other evidence pointing to a possible homicide versus a self-inflicted or accidental death. That morning rather than calling “911,” Aaron Easton first called Brian and Amanda Hopper to come to the home. They declined. Then he called “911.”

 

Sara was then transported to Adventist Emergency Department in Marysville and pronounced dead.

 

Brian Hopper and Aaron Easton began their careers in law enforcement at Yuba County Sheriff’s Department (YCSD). Easton’s “Linked-In” profile says he was at YCSD from April 2004 – February 2011. Hopper left the department after Easton.

 

YCSD leadership was relieved with both Hopper and Easton departing. There was information that they were having sexual relations with women while on duty. In fact, a Yuba College police cadet later accused Easton of forcing her to give him oral sex while she was on an academy ride-along.

 

Brian Hopper was married to Amanda Jones Hopper at the time. Amanda Hopper was the new District Attorney (DA) of Sutter County (November 2014 election) when Sara Easton died. And, DA Hopper’s father Steve Jones worked as a prosecutor for the Yuba County District Attorney’s office.

 

These relationships created a number of conflicts to investigating Sara’s death. Brian Hopper was called-in for questioning by Yuba City Police detectives.

 

However, they did not believe his story about his relationship to Sara Easton and they called his wife, the DA to explain the situation. That led to more questions. Did investigators think Brian Hopper was having an affair with Sara Easton or was he a person of interest in her death or both?

 

Police investigators noting the ethical conflict in dealing with the Sutter and Yuba County DA offices went to Colusa County District Attorney John Poyner seeking approval of search warrants. Poyner authorized the warrants and said he would have no problem prosecuting Aaron Easton for murder with the evidence he reviewed.

 

Although DA Hopper could not prosecute this case she had a lot at stake. Hopper sought confidential details and findings from the sheriff’s department. It was awkward for law enforcement personnel.

 

  According to Sara Easton who once considered the DA a close friend, Amanda had sexual relations with Sara’s husband. Sara Easton knew her husband to be a sex addict, having had many affairs including an Appeal Democrat reporter. She knew he was having other women while working at YCSD which eventually led to her getting a venereal disease from her husband.

 

When Aaron Easton applied for a job at Marysville Police Department in 2010 where he later became chief and interim city manager the background investigator was informed of Easton’s marital unfaithfulness. He was hired by the city anyway.

 

Sara Easton was afraid of her husband’s penchant for sado-masochism including choking her and taping a plastic bag over her head. She was afraid of her husband. Sara was tired of trying to outperform or compete with the flings and affairs in his life.

 

In her frustration did Sara kill herself in her own home near the children she loved? Or, did she tell him she was leaving leading to an argument and Aaron shooting her?

 

Law enforcement personnel close to the case believe Aaron killed Sara. The family wonders why nothing is being done. Some say the case went to the State Attorney General’s (AG) Office.

 

The AG’s office has never been helpful on cases here. The AG has a reputation of being political and paper-weights. Some in the Yuba City Police Department say the case is still there. Who is blocking this investigation?

Meanwhile life goes on. Both Assemblyman Gallagher and Senator Nielsen endorsed DA Hopper for another 4-year term. She won easily in 2018.

 

Easton re-married right away and lives in Moore, OK.  His “Linked-In” profile touts his law enforcement accomplishments while leaving out his resignation as the Marysville Police Chief following the cadet sexual assault investigation. Easton says, “I have been asked to speak on the Dr. Phil Show, Good Day Sacramento and was featured on several programs, including NBC News, Yahoo News, and American Police Beat Magazine, among others.”

 

“I was featured in ‘Police Chief’ magazine as a recipient of the International Association of Chiefs of Police 2016 40 Under 40 Award; given to the 40 law enforcement professionals under 40, throughout the world, that best exhibit leadership in the law enforcement profession.”

 

More dangerous than a dirty cop is a dirty judicial system. Justice delayed is justice denied.

Yuba County, Ca.

 

AAUW Girls on the move best IMG 8942

The next STEM Conference for 8th Grade Girls will be held at Yuba College the morning of Monday, March 30.  Last year’s STEM Conference brought more than 800 students to the Yuba College campus to experience what college life might be like, and to learn from local women about their careers in fields that require science and math.   The conference’s purpose is to encourage girls to stay in school and not to avoid the ‘hard’ subjects.  Studies have shown that girls are as proficient in science and math as anyone, and they can succeed.  This year’s STEM Conference will include working women in fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.

 

Middle and K-8 schools in Sutter and Yuba Counties are invited to attend, and many teachers bring their 8th grade girls to the STEM Conference every year.  Students come to the STEM Conference with their math or science teachers in school busses as a school project.  Many leave with ideas about the career direction on which they wish to focus, and have a better idea of what classes to sign up for when they get to high school in the fall.

 

The STEM Conference begins at 9:00 a.m. in the Yuba College gymnasium with keynote speaker, Preet Didbal, the former Mayor of Yuba City and Yuba City Planning Commissioner.  Then they will break out into Sessions taught by local women in STEM careers.  After each girl has attended her 3 sessions, all 800 or so girls will join again in the school cafeteria for lunch.  Girls who have signed up for a Campus Tour will do so following lunch.   For more information contact the STEM Conference Chairs: Sandy Davini, 673-0930, /c 713-1390; and Barbara Solheim, 674-3577, /c 751-6954. 

Yuba City, Ca.

 

gordon

 

Officer David Gordon, a Yreka native who started his 13-year CHP career with the Santa Rosa office, suffered his injuries  in the early hours of Oct. 19, 2020 after he and a partner exited their patrol vehicle to direct traffic past malfunctioning train crossing gates on Highway 99, near Live Oak.

 

While the officers directed traffic, a dark gray SUV came speeding around a curve. His partner was able to jump out of the way, but Gordon couldn’t avoid the SUV. After hitting Gordon, the driver exited the vehicle and attempted to flee. The unharmed officer chased down the suspect, identified as Lucas Julian Nelson, who was later booked the Sutter County jail on charges of resisting arrest and DUI with great bodily injury. The CHP Yuba-Sutter office said Nelson was determined to have been driving under the influence of alcohol.

 

CHP Officer David Gordon came home on  Friday, February 21, 2020 after four months in the hospital. He was met with cheers and raucous applause from more than 100 hospital workers and law enforcement brethren as he emerged from the main entrance of UC Davis Medical Center in Sacramento on Friday afternoon. Accompanied by his wife and their two children, a walker-assisted Gordon, dressed in a blue T-shirt with an American flag on the front, climbed into a white limousine moments after turning and offering his crowd of supporters a humble but enthused “Thank you!”

 

 

by Lou Binninger

 

          Most wonder why foreigners coming here legally or illegally can order from the public benefits menu for US citizens. It was not always this way. Furthermore, people question why politicians of either party do not correct the egregious giveaway of taxpayer dollars.

 

            Sadly, whether immigration, welfare, or abortion funding reform, there has been no difference between the two parties until ‘the businessman’ ran for president. The Trump-term for this political morass is ‘the swamp.’

            Some may not understand that there were immigration regulations passed by Congress that were not being enforced. The Trump administration is changing this.

 

            The administration is implementing federal regulations geared toward stopping welfare-dependent legal immigrants from permanently settling in the United States.

 

            After the U.S. Supreme Court approved the regulation, the Trump administration is applying the “Public Charge” rule — whereby legal immigrants are less likely to secure a permanent residency in the U.S. if they have used any form of welfare in the past, including cash benefits for income maintenance, Supplemental Security Income (SSI), Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (welfare), Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)– otherwise known as food stamps, Medicaid, and certain taxpayer-funded housing programs.

 

            The “rule” will favor granting citizenship to younger, self-sufficient, healthier, and English-speaking legal immigrants over those who have used at least one form of public welfare for more than 12 months within any 36-month period.

 

            In the past, 56 percent of Hispanic citizens here said they supported favoring self-sufficient legal immigrants for green cards over welfare-dependent legal immigrants, as well as about 6-in-10 of all American voters and 62 percent of all swing voters.

 

            Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Deputy Secretary Ken Cuccinelli said that the “Public Charge” rule is a continuation of “longstanding law” dating back to the 1800s. Most recently in 1996, a rule demanding legal immigrants be self-sufficient was codified into federal statute but has hardly ever been enforced.

 

Cuccinelli said, “This rule enforces longstanding law requiring aliens to be self-sufficient, reaffirming the American ideals of hard work, perseverance, and determination. It also offers clarity and expectations to aliens considering a life in the United States and will help protect our public benefits programs.”

 

“The rule’s” restrictions do not apply to foreigners arriving here as refugees, asylees, victims of human trafficking, domestic violence, and violent crime.

 

Big business and corporate lobbyists denounce “the rule” wanting instead to provide taxpayer handouts to new arrivals, legal or illegal, in order to create more consumers and attract cheap laborer.

 

“The rule’s” enforcement will create a windfall for taxpayers in the form of an annual $57.4 billion tax cut — the amount taxpayers spend every year for the welfare, crime, and schooling costs of the country’s 1.2 million new, mostly low-skilled legal arrivals.

 

In 2017, the National Academies of Science found that immigrant households consume 33 percent more cash welfare than American citizen households. Center for Immigration Studies (CIS) explains that about 63 percent of noncitizen households in the U.S. use at least one form of public welfare, while only about 35 percent of native-born American households are on welfare. This means that noncitizen households use about twice as much welfare as native-born American households.

 

In California — with the largest noncitizen population in the country, almost 11 million or nearly 30 percent of the state’s total population — more than seven-in-ten, or 72 percent of noncitizen households are on at least one form of welfare. Only about seven-in-twenty or 35 percent of native-born households in California are on welfare.

Currently, there are an estimated 44.5 million foreign-born residents living in the U.S. This is nearly quadruple the immigrant population in 2000. The vast majority of those arriving in the country every year are low-skilled legal immigrants who compete against working and middle-class Americans for jobs.

 

When unlimited public benefits await those from other countries as a reward for arriving here, it is akin to winning the lottery upon landing. Those noncitizens convicted of crimes, after serving their time here, often fight their deportation, remaining in immigration detention centers like the Yuba County jail for years hoping to win their cases. They can voluntarily return to their nation of origin at US taxpayers expense at any time in their appeal process.

 

Hopefully, enforcing the “Public Charge” rule will be a step toward sanity in immigration regulations.

by Lou Binninger

               

A longtime neighbor and resident of downtown Marysville, CA while out for a walk stopped to explain that he and his wife were moving. They visited relatives in Oklahoma at Christmas and there was no looking back to the Left Coast.

            Gas was more than a dollar less in OK, at just over $2 per gallon. Everything was cheaper. He said the state even respects the Constitution, including gun rights.

 

Oklahoma allows most adults to carry guns openly, without a permit, as long as they aren't violating other laws. The state became even more gun friendly in 2019 by eliminating the license requirement for carrying concealed handguns.

 

Less government, fewer rules undermining freedom and more respect for the nation’s founding values sealed the deal for another “Golden State” family’s departure. They also liked the fact that OK is a Red State. The Republican candidate has carried Oklahoma in every presidential election since 1968, often by large margins.

 

The couple did not even take time to place their Marysville home on the market. One phone call to a home-buying firm and they were free to go.

 

Meanwhile, liberals in the California legislature are stumped by rising homeless numbers (CA has 12% of nation’s population, 25% of nation’s homeless) and the resulting filth, disease and crime. Meanwhile, the same political kooks are confident of cooling the temperature of the earth and lowering the ocean by severely taxing Californians. The lefties have a delusion about saving the planet while they cannot even keep the poop scooped and free syringes collected.

 

California has more than a third of America’s welfare recipients. Seventy-two percent of immigrant families and over 30 percent of native families in the state receive some type of welfare. Many of these benefits come in the form of no-strings-attached handouts to the poor and kind-of-close-to-poor. As long as your income falls under a certain threshold, you get free money—even if you are able to work but choose not to.

 

“In the late 1980s and early 1990s, some states—principally Wisconsin, Michigan and Virginia—initiated welfare reform, as did the federal government under President Bill Clinton and the Republican Congress,” wrote Kerry Jackson of the Pacific Research Institute.

 

“The common thread of the reformed welfare programs was strong work requirements placed on aid recipients. These overhauls were widely recognized as a big success, as welfare rolls plummeted and millions of former aid recipients entered the workforce. The state and local bureaucracies that implement California’s antipoverty programs, however, have resisted pro-work reforms. In fact, California recipients of state aid receive a disproportionately large share of it in no-strings-attached cash disbursements. It’s as if welfare reform passed California by, leaving a dependency trap in place.”

 

After the legislature forced PGE (rates 2 times the national average) and other utilities aground with environmental and regulatory excesses, Governor Newsom is politically desperate for some positive news. He is crowing about tampons (and other feminine hygiene products) and diapers being declared sales tax exempt. Decades of democrat injustice and abuse of women by taxing vaginas is now being reversed.

 

It seems odd that Komifornia would untax something. When nearly all objects and services are taxed and some with multiple assessments politicians now score points for throwing the abused citizens a financial bone.

The diaper discount is also odd since the State funds the killing of diaper-using tiny humans even after they see the light.

 

California’s Green movement nonsense and failures are embarrassing and are leading to the enforcing of tighter and tighter controls on Californians. Most free people don’t voluntarily embrace economically stupid ideas. It has to be accomplished at gun point or by taking away options and assets.

 

In spite of adding 530 miles of commuter rail in So. CA. transit ridership has been declining since 1985. CA transit system spending went from $10.4 billion in 2014 to $12.3 billion in 2018 mostly coming from our road funds, not rider fees. Meanwhile, use slipped from 1.5 billion to 1.3 billion passengers with transit supplying less than 10% of our transport needs.

 

In 2017/2018 the LA region lost 27 million of its annual rides in spite of service increases and a roaring economy. Bay Area Rapid Transit lost 10 million uses in the last four years.

 

Meanwhile sales of electric cars are horrible and will fall far short of Governor Brown’s Commie-style “executive orders” of 1.5 million zero emission vehicles on the road by 2025 and 5 million by 2030.

 

As socialist politicians seeking a centrally-managed utopia waste the money of hard working Californians, more citizens are leaving the state each day for freer pastures.

 

yuba and sutterFrom Left to Right; Kelli Evans, Yuba Sutter Farm Bureau Ag Crime Committee Yuba County Sheriff Deputy Jeremy Baumgardner, Ag Crime/Farm Bureau Liaison for YCSO Yuba County Sheriff-Coroner Wendell Anderson Randy Butschillinger, SmartWater CSI Representative Sutter County Sheriff-Coroner Brandon Barnes Frank Hall, Yuba Sutter Farm Bureau Ag Crime Committee

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

On 2/19/2020, Yuba County Sheriff Wendell Anderson and Sutter County Sheriff Brandon Barnes announced a new state-of-the-art, crime-fighting tool designed to reduce agriculture thefts. Agriculture in the Yuba Sutter Area is an over 800 million dollar a year industry; and they are often a target of property crimes involving extremely valuable equipment and commodities. The Yuba and Sutter Sheriff Offices are collaborating with the Yuba-Sutter Farm Bureau to launch the program locally with the creators of a company called SmartWater CSI, which makes a liquid product used to mark and identify ownership of farm equipment.

 

SmartWater is a liquid you cannot see, feel, or smell. However, once a special light shines on the applied SmartWater product, it emits a yellow telltale glow. The liquid has its own unique fingerprint or DNA-similar encryption that is registered to individual farmers or ranchers who take part in the program. A small dab on a piece of equipment is all that is required. If equipment is stolen that is marked with this special liquid and investigators are able to locate the suspect or the marked property, it can lead to identification of the rightful owners of the property and evidence to assist in prosecution of suspects involved in the theft.

 

Once applied, the unique liquid lasts for years. It is not susceptible to scrubbing; and not even bleach or other chemicals will remove it. If the traceable SmartWater gets on the hands or clothes of the offender, it can assist investigators to forensically place that suspect at the crime scene and potentially help solve such theft cases.

Crime Prevention is also a core goal of the program. Signs and stickers will be provided to farmers using the system to designate equipment and property as being a part of the SmartWater CSI program. The hope is that thieves will see the signage at farms and ranches and decide it is simply not worth the risk to steal equipment protected by SmartWater.

 

We are committed to helping protect one of Yuba-Sutter’s most important industries. We encourage farming and industrial operations to contact our local Yuba Sutter Farm Bureau to inquire about using this advanced identification system to protect your valuable equipment and join us in fighting Agriculture crime.

 

Photo, From Left to Right;

Kelli Evans, Yuba Sutter Farm Bureau Ag Crime Committee

Yuba County Sheriff Deputy Jeremy Baumgardner, Ag Crime/Farm Bureau Liaison for YCSO

Yuba County Sheriff-Coroner Wendell Anderson

Randy Butschillinger, SmartWater CSI Representative

Sutter County Sheriff-Coroner Brandon Barnes

Frank Hall, Yuba Sutter Farm Bureau Ag Crime Committee

Marysville, Ca.

 

curt A After 23 years of dedicated service to Yuba Water Agency, General Manager Curt Aikens will retire in January of 2021.                

                              

At last weeks board meeting, the agency’s directors announced their acceptance of his retirement, with gratitude for his many years of service. The board also announced that they have chosen to appoint the assistant general manager, Willie Whittlesey, as the new general manager, effective July 1, 2020, at which time Aikens will assume a role focused on special projects. 

 

“In my time here, we’ve grown the agency from about 20 people to around 75 to address opportunities and challenges,” said Aikens. “We’ve done some really remarkable things in that time, which have set Yuba County up for great success. It’s been an incredible journey, and I look forward to spending my last year here really focused on a few critical projects that need extra attention to get them over the finish line.”

 

“Curt has been such a vital part of the success of Yuba Water,” said Randy Fletcher, the agency’s board chairman. “During his time leading this organization, we have made incredible leaps and bounds in reducing flood risk and ensuring a sustainable water supply for the people of Yuba County. The other board members and I have 100 percent confidence in Willie as our selection to lead us into the future, as we continue to focus on those priority missions, but also transition more into other ways to improve the quality of life in Yuba County.” 

 

willie

As the assistant general manager of Yuba Water Agency, Whittlesey assists with all aspects of agency operations and management including reducing flood risk, hydroelectric power generation, energy sales, water rights, water supply reliability, ecosystem improvements and more. 

“Curt has really helped set this agency up for long-term success,” said Whittlesey. “In the last three years, I’ve learned a lot from him, and I’m grateful for his confidence in me, as well as the board’s. I am honored, humbled and really excited about the opportunity to lead this agency into the next phase of our journey. I love managing the water and power, but am equally excited about some of the other things we are getting involved in now, like forest health, water education, economic development and other exciting new opportunities.”

 

A registered professional forester, Whittlesey grew up in the Sierra Nevada foothills and has been working in the Yuba River watershed for 25 years in roles ranging from forestry to hydroelectric power generation. Prior to joining Yuba Water, he was with PG&E for 13 years.   

by Lou Binninger

 

Yuba County Counsel Michael J. Ciccozzi wrote an opinion piece in the Appeal Democrat last week to explain why Nevada County law firm Colantuono, Highsmith and Whatley, PC, did not file Yuba’s Measure K (sales tax increase) brief with the Appellate Court on time.

 

The brief was to explain the flaws in Superior Court Judge Stephen Berrier’s September 9, 2019 ruling that Measure K was invalid. Measure K was pitched to voters as a tax for public safety (needing 2/3s approval) while touted by the county as only needing a majority vote to pass (for a general tax measure). It received 53.04% approval.

 

Not only is the county continuing to illegally use the people’s money to hire Colantuono, Highsmith and Whatley, PC to defend the faulty measure but Ciccozzi’s writing is pricy as well. His predecessor, Courtney Abril, was earning 187,378.03 annually (2018) according to Transparent California. After just 18 months on the job, Abril resigned for “family reasons” as the controversy erupted over Measure K’s double-minded legalese.

 

Ciccozzi assures that the county will get its extension to file and says that the court’s schedules are basically suggestions with grace periods attached. He further says that the extra time granted will allow the county to continue to “polish and complete” its arguments.

 

Although none of us are as intelligent as the County Counsel the county has had since 2017 to hone its arguments by using lawyers and public relations firms skilled at skinning the taxpayers on the citizens’ dime.

 

Since Judge Berrier’s ruling 163 days have come and gone to perfect the briefing due on February 19, 2020. That’s really not enough time to produce government work according to Ciccozzi. However, for every day waiting, and now the “grace period” and then the trial Yuba County citizens lose $10,000/day from the scam Measure.

 

A 15-day “grace period” costs Yuba County residents $150,000 in additional sales taxes. Justice delayed is justice denied. The court gave a deadline of February 19 and the county missed the date. Every day that passes is a day that taxpayers are forced and compelled to pay a tax that the Superior Court ruled unconstitutional.

 

Ciccozzi writes that the “citizens of Yuba County recognized the need for Measure K and a significant majority voted in favor of the Measure.” According to Judge Berrier the number of voters agreeing with Measure K was not significant enough to create a special tax.

 

Some believe the attorneys were instructed by County leadership to not file the brief to avoid the contents becoming campaign fodder before election-day, March 3. Three supervisors and County Administrator Robert Bendorf’s wife Melanie are campaigning for office and all supported the Measure K sales tax increase.

 

Michael ‘no big deal’ Ciccozzi’s words for taxpayers and supervisors to ignore the rules haven’t always worked out. He left a wake of financial pain from his bad advice for El Dorado County (EDC) Supervisors where he previously worked. He encouraged them to ignore their responsibility to perform 5-year studies to justify charging property owners mitigation fees.

 

In November 2019, after he resigned from EDC, the 3rd District Court of Appeals ruled in Austin v El Dorado County that the county must refund to citizens their mitigations fees plus interest totaling about $35 million. Why? The county did not perform the state-mandated studies to prove there was still a need for the assessments.

In opposition to the EDC Auditor-Controller’s admonition years before that the county was in violation of the Mitigation Fees Act, Ciccozzi told the supervisors they need not do the studies and there would be no consequences.

 

EDC Auditor-Controller Joe Harn said recently about the ruling, “The decision is very discouraging because the county could’ve very easily avoided this costly litigation by simply following state law.” Then EDC Administrator Terri Daly, now with Yuba Water Agency and earning $232,428.50 (2018 Transparent California), joined Ciccozzi to oppose Harn and state law.

 

It is rare indeed for bureaucrats and politicians to be held responsible for their neglect of duty or the law, thereby costing the citizens hundreds of millions of dollars. They simply jump to another job and sumptuous salary.

by Lou Binninger

 

For longtime local residents that have experienced the 1955, 1986 and 1997 floods in Yuba-Sutter Counties, you can skip all the studies and maps. These people would tell you develop more flood control, evacuate early and improve communication.

 

            People have lacked those benefits. For newcomers, both Oroville Dam and the New Bullards Bar Dam were built after 1955 to primarily increase control of our raging rivers.

 

The December 24, 1955 deluge destroyed primarily Yuba City and Sutter County with the levee breaking off of Garden Hwy at Shanghai Bend. When the breach occurred, Marysville was already evacuated due to having the lowest levees. Many people and business assets relocated to Yuba City from Marysville.

 

In the end, 40,000 people would evacuate the surrounding area, with over 600 needing to be rescued by boat or helicopter and 38 people dying in the floodwater. It was a devastating disaster and a strong lesson for the area that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers calls “the most prone to intense flooding of any river valley in the United States.”

 

The Feb. 20, 1986 and Jan. 2, 1997 levee breaks occurred behind the current WalMart in Linda (Yuba River) and on the Arboga levee (Feather River) at the end of Anderson Avenue. The one interesting change in flood emergency strategy after 1997 was to remove the Yuba County Board of Supervisors from making evacuation decisions.

"Two hours before the levee broke, we were told there were no problems with the levee, yet my understanding was they were working on boils at noon," said Supervisor Al Amaro in 1997.

 

By 11 a.m. on Jan. 2, the Feather River gauge at Yuba City reached 77.5 feet, the level at which a mandatory evacuation should have been declared. About seven hours later, Marysville, Yuba City and Sutter County ordered an evacuation. Yuba County officials didn't evacuate until the Arboga levee gave way.

 

Yet Sheriff Gary Tindel had requested of the Supervisors that evacuations begin one-two weeks prior. He was denied. He was also voted out next election after being the scapegoat for the Supervisors’ botched decision-making.

 

Politicians know little to nothing about flood crises or dealing with people in extreme emergencies. After the 1997 debacle Yuba County gave the Sheriff and the Director of Emergency Services the power to declare evacuations.

The politicians wanted to avoid political fall-out from evacuations proving later to be unnecessary. In 1997, their foot-dragging cost 3 people’s lives, tens of thousands of animals dying and millions of dollars of damage to assets that could have been moved from harm’s way.

 

February 7, 2017, the Oroville Dam Spillway failure caused a downstream evacuation initiated by Butte County Sheriff Kory Honea after overhearing concerned crisis managers at the dam. Being warned of the threat of a new type of flood calamity people evacuated.

 

Faced with the usual limited exits from cities there was gridlock while Yuba City and Sutter County gave opposing evacuation orders. The other trouble in 2017 was poor and faulty communication in general.

 

In spite of social media, websites, and cell phones, not being able to rely on a radio station that would simply give out facts and local instructions was a bummer. The amount of social media hearsay and fake news was worse than nothing at all and a big step backward compared to radio station briefings connected to crisis managers.

 

Recently, Yuba Water Agency provided a grant of $65,000 to buy “flood and levee inundation maps and associated products” for the Office of Emergency Services. The grant request said the money was “critical for emergency response efforts for public safety.” Sounds like money for a clean-up operation versus proactively preventing loss.

 

In reading the details it seems that the new mapping will tell where the flood water will flow and stand the deepest and longest. Hopefully the people, animals and assets are long gone by then. The study tools won’t help in the middle of the crisis getting people out via the limited and overwhelmed escape routes.

It’s the same problem that always has been. In fact, there are no new roads or highways being built or in the works to enhance evacuations. Due to politicians being bought-off, Marysville is the biggest choke-point in the region even on a nonemergency good day.

 

Taxpayers fear that so many studies and reports to save the world end up lost in a cabinet a decade later.  The need that does not change in a flood is early evacuation and ‘old school’ radio communication. The rest is a mop-up effort.

Bakersfield, Ca.

 

Last weeks signing of a record of decision coordinating federal and state water projects offers a hopeful sign, according to California Farm Bureau Federation President Jamie Johansson.

 

 Johansson, who attended the ceremony in Bakersfield where President Trump announced signing of the document, said the action will add much-needed flexibility to operation of the federal Central Valley Project and State Water Project. He also thanked the president for signing a memo directing federal agencies to coordinate efforts to store more water, offer regulatory certainty and improve protection of protected species.

 

 “Farmers are optimists and this is a day for optimism,” Johansson said. “The federal agencies have taken a holistic look at the California water system and offered an alternative that promises to improve the health of the environment without devastating people whose communities and livelihoods depend on reliable water supplies.

 “We should embrace this new approach and give it a chance to succeed,” he said. “We know all too well that the policies of the past 25-plus years haven’t worked.”

 

 Johansson said better coordination and improved flexibility of federal and state water project operations would benefit people throughout California.

 

 “Federal and state officials need to be pulling in the same direction to assure the most efficient use of California water for fish and people,” he said. “We hope people at all levels of government can cooperate on plans to enhance the environment, accommodate a growing population and maintain productive farms and ranches.”

 Johansson expressed disappointment in reports indicating the state government will sue over today’s federal actions, and said solutions to California water problems will be found in constructive discussions, not in courtrooms

 

“We have to get off the merry-go-round of endless litigation,” he said. “No one benefits from that. Fisheries continue to suffer. Productive farmland goes unused. It’s not a sustainable path for anyone. Farm Bureau will continue to advocate for practical, reasonable, cooperative ways to address California’s water supply needs.”

Marysville, Ca

 

bok1

 

The Chinese Lunar New Year, Bok Kai Parade and Festival welcomes the Year of the Rat.

 

The Bok Kai parade's rich history is believed to have started as far back as the 1850s. Always held on the weekend closest to the second day of the second month of the Lunar calendar it is the longest continually held parade in California. The parade honors Bok Eye, considered to be the god of the North and is said to be the Chinese water god whose powers have prevented Marysville from flooding since 1997. Bok Kai's powers include overseeing waterways, irrigation and rain. It has never rained during the parade.

 

The parade starts at 11:00 a.m. at the corner of 6th and D Streets on Saturday, February 22. The Grand Marshall for the 2020 parade is Frank Booth. Following the parade there are many entertainment venues, with a Lion Dance performance at 4:00 on 113 C Street.

 

On Sunday the 23rd Bomb Day activities will take place in China Town at 1st and C Street. Also known as Bok Kai's birthday a tradition that began in the 1880's.

 

Bok Kai Parade Ambassador is Carson Kam.  Carson Kam has lived in Marysville with family for almost two years now. He is attending his last semester at Cal Berkeley as a grad student in Economics. He did his under-grad studies at University of Central Florida. Carson was born in Florida and is a first generation born Chinese American. He is the youngest of four in his family. He hopes to stay in the Northwest part of the country after graduation.

by Lou Binninger

 

            Incumbent Yuba Water Agency (YWA) director Charlie Mathews was interviewed recently on the Yuba Sutter Political Spotlight. It can be viewed on the Spotlight’s Facebook page.

 

            Mathews is an agri-businessman who operates a rice-growing and dryer operation based in Yuba County. YWA’s board is comprised of the five County Supervisors and two at-large citizens elected from North and South Yuba County. Mathews is in the North.

 

            Four years ago, Mathews’ concern was that the financial affairs of YWA were not transparent and therefore the agency was not answerable to the citizens of Yuba County. If people are not fully informed of the workings of the agency they cannot have an educated response according to Mathews.

 

            In his first campaign, Mathews also worked to put an initiative on the ballot to distribute some of the agency’s funds more equitably among other water agencies and farmer/water pumpers (beneficiaries from selling water). The initiative was blocked from the ballot by a YWA legal move undermining any opportunity of the voters to have a say in how YWA revenues were spent.

 

            Recently, Mathews and former Marysville City Councilman Dale Whitmore recommended a plan to clean-up Ellis Lake using Yuba River water that would eliminate the long-standing algae problem caused by pumping mineral-laden ground water. The two men offered to pay (Mathews $10,000 / Whitmore $1,500) to restart and operate an existing pump located at the Yuba River.

 

            Mathews was critical of a nonsensical plan devised by EKI Environment and Water who he believes conducted a flawed and biased study favoring placing 25 aerators in the lake bottom and treating the lake with chemicals. EKI’s nearly $700,000 project would not clean the lake enough for any water contact by people.

            The Mathews – Whitmore plan would be practical and inexpensive since the Yuba River water is free and the lake would function like a natural lake with an inlet and outlet of river water. Unfortunately, the city council is going forward spending hundreds of thousands of taxpayer dollars for the EKI contraption.

 

            Mathews’ interview on Facebook is an opportunity for some insight into the inner workings of YWA that are normally sheltered from the public’s view. Charlie’s farmer/citizen/businessman perspective has disrupted a board that tends to always agree with its director.

 

WW II Army General George S. Patton liked to say, “If everyone is thinking alike, then somebody isn’t thinking.”

Mathews said that for ten years the agency board had two members elected from an advisory council made-up from local water and reclamation districts, utilities and municipalities for two-year terms rather than two at-large community members. The former approach offered the board a higher level of water and flood control expertise.

The change to at-large members eliminated the expertise and substituted another political job for ex-supervisors who had the name recognition to get elected by the voters.

 

Mathews said when he was elected YWA had about $50 millionin the bank and while on the board YWA has made $55 million in loans and grants. Now, there is $150 million in reserves.

 

However, Mathews says the board still is not transparent. It gives money away via a 3-person pod committee that meets on Thursday with a final board vote on Tuesday. Mathews says the pod recommendations are “rubberstamped” by the YWA board without any public input. He thinks it is a rushed and not properly vetted approach.

 

Mathews contends that citizens and other elected officials need to have more of a say in how millions of dollars are distributed. He reports that before he came on the board YWA funds were being poorly invested with half its revenue sitting in a no-interest checking account and the remaining monies earning just 2% interest. Mathews feels that today YWA is doing a better job earning interest on its funds.

 

Mathews’ view on YWA being awash in millions of power and water sales dollars is – “When you have extra income, it’s hard to be frugal. But just because you have extra income it does not give you the right to not be frugal.”

 

Mathews wants “every decision to be business-based” and he is not convinced that is occurring. He wants YWA directors to be more responsible stewards for Yuba County citizens.

 

Regarding his “Your Water Your Money” campaign slogan, Mathews said when he ran four years ago, YWA directors thought that it was “their water and their money.” He believes “the culture still needs changing.

by Lou Binninger

 

The government in California is not only corrupt and incompetent but very expensive at every level.  It is grossly overstaffed and routinely underperforms.

 

            Thousands of employees get overgenerous salaries/retirement for mediocre service. In fact, they don’t work very often when holidays, vacation, family leave, sick days, personal days etc. are deducted. Taxpayers are being ripped-off.

 

            California has the highest marginal income tax rates in the nation at 13.3%. Nearby Nevada, Washington and Texas have no state income tax. Oregon is 9.90%, Arizona 4.50%, Utah 4.95% and Idaho is 6.95%.

 

            DMV fees for some cars are the price of a cheap used car in past years. DMV’s greatest success has been wrongly registering thousands of people from foreign countries to vote Democrat. If you need to go to the DMV office take a novel, lunch and medications.

 

            Sutter County Supervisors thought the best they could do for a County Administrator was a discredited Thousand Oaks City Manager that was unanimously canned there for unethical behavior. He was so richly paid (more than $300,000 annually with all the perks) here that he could afford to commute from Ventura County 400 miles away.

 

He showed-up enough to keep his job until he could find work elsewhere. Sutter County was a cheap trick for him to clean-up his reputation and return to SoCal. That was an expensive date thanks to Sutter County Supervisors getting played.

 

            Yuba County Administrator Robert Bendorf, and his wife Melanie like working in Yuba County, but not enough to live there. They reside in Placer County. If Melanie is elected Yuba County judge then they will be paid nearly a half million tax dollars annually and live in Placer or anywhere but Yuba.

 

Those were the good old days when highly-paid community leaders liked the area enough to dwell there.

The Sacramento Bee reported in June that taxpayers paid more than $21,000 for former Caltrans director Laurie Berman to commute to Sacramento from San Diego for a year. The state paid for Berman’s flights and most of the rent for a Sacramento apartment, along with thousands of dollars more in Lyft rides, rental cars and meals. Berman retired in June.

 

Berman’s successor in her previous San Diego Caltrans post, Ryan Chamberlain, also billed the state for regular Sacramento travel. Chamberlain received about $20,000 for flights to and from the capital from March 2018 through March 2019 and was reimbursed about $3,000 in car rentals.

 

Yuba County Administrator Bendorf gave us the flawed Measure K 1% sales tax increase that was invalidated by Yuba Superior Court Judge Berrier’s ruling. Bendorf and Yuba County Supervisors chose to appeal Berrier’s ruling costing county taxpayers $10,000 a day until the case is ruled upon in Sacramento.

 

That $10,000 a day could have been used by hard-working families for children’s clothes and medical care, for mortgages etc. More than $4 million dollars have been taken by the county from some of the poorest people in California in what amounts to government fraud.

 

Yuba County Supervisor Gary Bradford was the most outspoken proponent of Measure K, falsely claiming that the monies from K were dedicated to public safety and to a special restricted fund. Bradford may have been easily confused by Bendorf or he knew the truth and chose to deceive his constituents.

 

Bradford claims to be a conservative but has never found a tax he didn’t support including the plethora of bond measures on the current ballot. In fact, he opposed the 2016 Prop 6 gas tax repeal. The repeal was defeated leading to gas tax funds being diverted from road upgrades to be used for the bullet train and mass transit.

 

Even Assemblyman Gallagher and Senator Nielsen, both Republicans, said there were ample funds in the budget to maintain the roads without SB1 that hiked fuel taxes and DMV fees. Californians are paying 10 times the DMV fees compared to the same vehicles registered in some states due to SB1.

 

Gas prices in states like Missouri and Tennessee are in the $1.70’s and $1.80 per gallon compared to over $3.18 in Marysville, CA. And, Bradford endorsed that.

 

Thinking about not voting? Those choosing not to vote give their choice to others and this is the California they get.  

Yuba City, Ca.

 

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On Monday, February 10th, at approximately 4:50 PM, Yuba City Fire Department personnel were dispatched to 385 McRae Way for an apartment fire. Fire personnel was initially advised of 4 apartment units already involved.  Upon arrival at the scene, fire personnel found heavy fire involvement in a two-story apartment building, with several other adjacent apartment units and buildings threatened.  Fire personnel performed fire attack operations and were able to confine the fire to the eastern portion of 385 McRae.  The fire was contained within 2 hours, resulting in major fire damage to a total of 9 units in the apartment complex. 

 

 Due to the nature of this fire, all Yuba City Fire Apparatus responded on first-alarm and second-alarm.  The McRae Way incident resulted in strong cooperation and collaboration with numerous agencies, including our mutual and automatic aid partners.  Yuba City Police, Sutter County Fire, Marysville Fire, Linda Fire, Red Cross, and the Trauma Interventions Program (TIP) all played significant roles in mitigating this incident.  Fire personnel remained throughout the night performing overhaul, salvage, and maintaining the chain of custody for the Fire Investigation.  We are all very thankful there were no civilian injuries or fatalities.

 

 The Trauma Intervention Program (TIP) and Red Cross were requested to assist with temporary shelter and care of the displaced residents.  A total of 30 adults and 10 children were displaced from the 9 damaged units and an additional, 30-35 people in the remaining apartment complex were also displaced due to the damage and subsequent termination of gas and electricity.   A temporary shelter was established at the Main Exhibit Hall at the Yuba-Sutter Fairgrounds for those who were displaced and were unable to locate temporary housing.   The Red Cross advised that the shelter will remain open until all individuals in the shelter have located temporary housing.  

 The fire is currently under investigation by Yuba City Fire Investigators.

 

 And finally, the City and the entire community sincerely thank all first responders (including our Yuba City Police Department) who performed exceptionally well in extinguishing the fire as quickly as possible and evacuating all residents without any injuries or fatalities.