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Feather River Bulletin
Quincy, California
April 22, 2015     Feather River Bulletin
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April 22, 2015

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Bulletin, Record, Progressive, Reporter Wednesday, April 22, 2015 11B COMMUNITY PERSPECTIVE An observant public is key to child abuse prevention April is Child Abuse Prevention Month. It gives me a moment to reflect on- how important the community is in identifying suspected child abuse and reporting it to Child Protective Services. There isn't a week that goes by that social workers from the County Department of Social Service aren't called upon to investigate a referral from someone in the community who is reporting suspected child abuse. While WHERE I STAND ELLIOTT SMART DIRECTOR PLUMAS COUNTY DEPARTMENT OF SOCIAL SERVICES there are many cases that come to Child Protective Services from law enforcement agencies, many also come from people in the community: teachers, school nurses, physicians, concerned citizens and neighbors who have concerns about the well-being of children in our community. Every one of us has a responsibility and a role in assuring that children who are suspected of being abused or neglected are brought to the attention of Child Protective Services. Part of the beauty of a small community is the fact that it is pretty difficult to be anonymous. The likelihood is that if there are abused or neglected children in a household, someone will notice and will make a referral to our department for a follow-up investigation. Each referral we receive at Child Protective Services is evaluated by a social worker and CPS supervisor. And for , many of them, we also do a field investigation or, at the very least, make calls to those who might have knowledge of the situation to follow up on the report we have received. Quite often referrals get reviewed by a team of individuals, including Social Services management. More eyes on the situation often reveal elements that might get overlooked and when it comes to protecting children, nothing can or should be overlooked. I periodically hear people say things that go like this: "Well, I referred it to CPS and they didn't do anything about it." CPS evaluates every referral we get. We never do "nothing." But because we are prohibited from talking about any of our cases, except with those who are partnering with us to provide services, we can't tell people about what we might have done. But it is never "nothing." Every so often our department answers questions about the child abuse referral rate in Plumas County. At first glance, the rate could appear to be disproportionately high See Smart, page 12B Tourism management district will benefit the whole county There is a small group of very dedicated people that are working on a project that will benefit most everyone in the county, which is the tourism management district. The concept originated from the Tourism Council that has been maintaining the countywide website and promoting countywide tourism after the Visitors Bureau was closed due to loss of county funding. The council is not sustainable for the long term because it depends on volunteers and individual memberships. Plumas County needs a well-funded professional tourism WHERE I STAND sustainable funding to .................................... compete in the tourism KAREN KLEVEN SPOKESPERSON TOURISM COUNCIL organization that understands tourism marketing. Tourism is declining in Plumas County because we don't have a countywide professional marketing organization, but tourism is increasing in places that have found a way to fund tourism marketing. And tourism is a vital component of the Plumas County economy. The TMD is the only way to generate market so we should all be going out of our way to support this group that are volunteering hours of their time. Wouldn't it be great to have some professional videos about Plumas County that air on TV stations in Reno, Sacramento and the Bay Area? Keeping up a tourism website is an everyday event and many visitors plan their travels on the Web. How about some nice ads in Sunset or VIA magazine? Wouldn't local groups love some dependable income for' some of their events that bring hundreds of people into our area? We could use some new brochures or reprinting some old ones to hand out to our visitors. A TMD could serve all these functions, which are very difficult to manage otherwise. How will the TMD raise sustainable income? By charging lodging guests an additional 3 percent fee that will go to the TMD -- not the county general fund. The county will collect the fee like it collects transient occupancy tax but it has to legally be disbursed to the TMD except for a small county administrative fee. Over 89 cities and counties in California have adopted this means of raising tourism marketing dollars since the 1994 legislation that made it possible, 67 of them in the last 10 years. Why? Because, like Plumas County, they have lost other sources of funding for what has become a major source of economic development -- tourism. The TMD steering committee has put together a management plan, which will be voted on by lodging lJroviders to guide the operation of the organization. Some people have criticized the concept of a TMD without reading the management plan or the other material that the committee has made available. One fallacy is that lodging providers will lose revenue if a 3 percent assessment is added to room stays, but all the research shows that it's the opposite. Areas that have instituted TMDs have shown a significant increase in lodging provider income. So the next step is to take the management plan to a vote of the lodging providers but it is essential to have 51 percent of those lodging providers that contribute to TOT to move forward. How we can help is to encourage See Kleven, page 13B LETTERS to the EDITOR Guidelines for letters All letters must contain an address and phone number. Only one letter per week per person will be published; only one letter per person per month they deserve. Open discussion, followed by effective action, is necessary if we are to preserve the health of our planet. Nearly 222 million women would like regarding the samcAogic ll, w .,tp.plegeat or delay be published. Feather .... Publishing does not print third-party, anonymous or open letters. Letters must not exceed 300 words. Writers responding to previously published letters may not mention the author by name. The deadline is Friday at 3 p.m.; deadlines may change due to holidays. Letters may be submitted at any of Feather Publishing's offices, sent via fax to 283-3952 or emailed to 45th Anniversary of Earth Day April 22 is the 45th anniversary of Earth Day. During these past 45 years, the haman population has increased from 3 billion to over 7 billion, the population of all land and fresh-water vertebrates has fallen by 53 percent and climate change has produced more severe weather and areas of extreme drought. Earth Day initially championed the importance of clean air, clean water and maintaining biodiversity. Now there is a new challenge. Humans have made great strides in combating illness and extending human lives, butit has resulted in unprecedented human population growth. Scientists are alarmed about the effect that human population growth has had on our natural world. Qur planet's resources are fihite. As human populations grow; habitats are destroyed and environments are altered. Studies indicate that more than 60 percent of the essential services provided by nature are in decline. In essence, the planet has a shrinking capacity to sustain its growing human population. Presently, more than 2.2 billion people live in poverty. One billion of these poor live below the global poverty rate of $1.25 a day and face starvation. One-third of the human population has no access to sanitation, and almost 1 billion people face water scarcity. It is unfortunate that issues surrounding human population growth are not given the universal attention childbearing worldwide' Having access to effective contraception is essential for these women. Promoting women's health and women's rights is equally important if women are to play a role in childbearing decisions. Realistically, if human population growth is left unchecked, humans may overwhelm our planet's resources, creating dire consequences for all living things. Faith Strailey Quincy Flawed health care system Dr. Kepple's heartfelt Where I Stand piece on April 15 shows the unfortunate reality of America's current health care system. Good decent people become doctors, nurses and administrators because it is their calling. But others view it in other ways. One reason why our health care system is falling is because there is a middleman in between us and our doctors. We call them health insurance companies. For the job of collecting our premiums and paying providers, they skim 2 - 30 percent off the top. But, there is even a more profound reason for the failure. America implements health care as a for-profit business instead of what it really is -- a commonsense right of all human beings. Hospitals and providers should not have to worry about "paying the bills," just as people should not have to worry either. It should be a cornerstone policy of America that every county have top-notch facilities, providers that are decently compensated and administrators who can focus their time on improving people's health. The problem, sadly, is that our health care system is based0n ideology. This ideology mandates that everything must be a for-profit business, that paying taxes must be avoided at all costs, and if you cannot afford health care -- too bad for you. It's disgusting that we allocate $500 - 600 billion for the Defense Department to kill people and make war profiteers filthy rich, yet we cannot properly fund and implement health care. The solution is simple -- expand Medicare to everyone, calling it the Health Security ,,, Administration. RedUce defense spending and reallocate that money to health care and infrastructure. And, increase taxes on high earners. Our government is founded on the principles of "we the people," "to insure domestic tranquility" and "promote the general welfare." Securing liberty for ourselves and posterity includes health care based on human needs, not business profits. Mark Mihevc Graeagle We need to be at the table "A seat at the table." A familiar phrase from state of Jefferson supporters. Just like making a restaurant reservation, the reservation only gets you a table -- you stilldon't have to eat there. This is all we are asking of the BOS -- please get us our seat at the table. As a board, or individually, they are welcome to join us, but they are under no obligation to come or to pay for anything. No matter your political ideology, or how hard our few representatives try, we are not fairly represented in California. Imposing oppressive and inappropriate regulations, taxes and fees, and taking away the liberties of residents of rural communities, is almost a daily occurrence. California has become "Goliath," and we are "David." Unfortunately, Goliath has confiscated all our stones and is coming next for our slingshots. SOJ supporters are not egotistical elitists wanting to start a renegade state built on their own terms and shoving them down the throats of everyone else. We already have that -- it's called California. But it was clear at the BOS meeting last week that there are a lot of misconceptions about this movement. Anyone can accuse someone of wanting to pollute the air, or get rid of law enforcement or other foolish things. I could call you a serial killer, too, but that wouldn't make it so. I suggest we start a dialogue using facts and constructive criticism. No accusations, no assumptions, no uninformed drama. This is an opportunity that ,W. ",fl! never c om.e again ,i ,; ,:: phn checker lifetime. And it may not come My first poini..$hat the to fruition in our lifetime. But before we close the door, before we leave our children hungering for a brighter future, we should at least make a reservation and check out the menu. See: Lynn Desjardin Portola Another inflammatory letter I am compelled to respond to another inflammatory letter. In the April 9 paper, the letter writer began by saying Democrats would crucify Christ again, if he were walking the earth. Again? Hmrnmmm ... well-kept secret about those Democrats in Biblical times. And, in addition, they hate the Bible, the Constitution and people of faith. Oh, really. The letter writer's characterization went on and on and on. Of course, this was not the fin:st time he has written this letter. He fabricates the most fallacious depictions of those of us who do not believe every sacred word that spews from the mouth of Rush Limbaugh and a host of right-wing hate mongers. For one, although I cannot speak for all, Democrats do not support abortion per se. They support the concept and the law which says that a woman, her family and her doctor have the right to help her choose her health options. Your particular religious views (nor mine) concerning another person's choice in this matter are not protected by our Constitution. When you deliberately and continually demonize all Democrats, you demonize many very good people whom I love. I would demand an apology from you, but I know that is not going to happen. I would ask that you refrain from further vile depictions, but I am not hopeful. I would expect one to argue his or her political views with known facts in the course of espousing opinions. But, alas, that will not be forthcoming, in my opinion. Tom Slavik Mohawk Vista Understaffed In a recent letter to the editor published April 7 there were opinions put forth regarding the building department's request to hire a Plumas County building official is required to adhere to the minimum current codes, procedures and protocol as adopted by the state of California. To be in compliance the building official, or his/her subordinates, must receive permit applications, review the construction documents, require corrections as needed, issue building permits and conduct certain inspections. These are mandated requirements and not discretionary tasks that can be waived by anyone at the county. My second point is that purported statement tha t all plans submitted to the county have been prepared and signed by an engineer and that a county plan review would be redundant is grossly inaccurate. In the recent past, I routinely created, drafted and submitted plans for single-family homes without any input from, or signature of, an engineer. An engineer's involvement is not required in Plumas County to obtain a building permit for a single-family:home,The . building official's office has the only trained personnel that are in a position to review permit documents for adherence to the codes prior to issuance of a building permit. My third point is that a low structure failure rate in this country is because there are minimum-prescriptive building codes, building offiCials, plans examiners and inspectors, ff you fall to fund the required trained staff for the building official's departments the structure failure rates will increase. q"ne United States having low structure failure rates supports the position of having proper staff and processes to ensure compliance. In closing, the real issue is that the county does not have See Letters, page 12B Contact your elected officials PLUMAS COUNTY SUPERVISORS- 520 Main Street, Room 309, Quincy, CA 95971; (530) 283-6170; FAX: (530) 283-6288; E-Mail: Individual supervisors can also be e-mailed from links on the county website, PRESIDENT - Barack Obama, the White House, 1600 Pennsylvania Ave., NW Washington, D.C. 20500. (202) 456-1414. Fax: 202-456-2461. E-mail: U.S. SENATOR- Dianne Feinstein (D), 331 Hart Senate Office Bldg., Washington, D.C. 20510. (202) 224-3841; FAX: 202-228-3954; TrYffDD: (202) 224-2501. District Office: One Post Street, Suite 2450, San Francisco, CA 94104;. Phone: (415) 393-0707; Fax: (415) 393-0710. Website: U.S. SENATOR - Barbara Boxer (D). District Office: 5011 St., Suite 7-600, Sacramento, CA 95814. (916) 448-2787; FAX (916) 448-2563.112 Hart Bldg., Washington, D.C. 20510. (202) 224-3553. FAX (202) 228-0454. U.S. REPRESENTATIVE, 1ST DIST. - Doug LaMalfa. 506 Cannon HOB, Washington, D.C. 20515. (202) 225-3076.;; twitter: @RepLaMalfa. DISTRICT OFFICE: 1453 Downer St., Suite #A, Oroville, CA 95965, (530) 534-7100, FAX (530) 534-7800. STATE SENATOR, 1st DIST. - Ted Gaines. State Capitol, Room 3070, Sacramento, CA 95814. (916) 651-4001, FAX: (916) 324-2680. El Dorado Hills Constituent Service Center: 4359 Town Center Boulevardl Suite 112, El Dorado Hills, CA 95762. (916) 933-7213, FAX (916) 933-7234; Redding Constituent Service Center: 1670 Market St., Suite 244, Redding, CA 96001, (530) 225- 3142, FAX (530) 225-3143. STATE ASSEMBLYMAN, 1ST DIST. - Brian DaMe, Stale Capitol, Suite 2158, Sacramento, CA 94249-00001 , (916) 319-2001; FAX (916) 319-2103. District Office, 280 Hemsted Dr., Ste. #110, Redding, CA 96002; (530) 223-6300, FAX (530) 223-6737. GOVERNOR- Jerry Brown, office of the Governor, State Capitol, Suite 1173, Sacramento, CA 95814. Website: 445-284.1. FAX: (916) 558-3160. ...... i ii ii