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Quincy, California
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August 6, 2014     Feather River Bulletin
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Bulletin, Record, Progressive, Reporter Wednesday, Aug. 6, 2014 7B COMMUNITY PERSPECTIVE What would you do for mental health with $10 million? Myhusband would love it I STAND lives have derailed into ifI would just let go of .................................. insanity; the ones who have Plumas County Mental KIMBALL C. PIER worn a pathway from the jail Health. But letting go has PH.D., LM~ to the emergency room and never been easy for me when back to the streets; the I'm in love. And I was in love any of my mistakes. My community members who with my job and the people of intention in writing this cannot cope alone or follow Plumas County as the response to the Plumas an outpatient treatment plan, director of mental health. County Grand Jury's report yet do not meet legal criteria Besides, I am working in is to be of some benefit and for hospitalization? Graeagle in private practice also to express myself as an Psychiatric hospitalization so I am still very much in advocate for consumers of costs $1,000 per day and touch with Plumas County. mental health and addiction usually does not stop the Having been feed by the services, cycle. If they do not meet Board of Supervisors last Admittedly, the heartache criteria, and there is no legal September, I am acutely over being feed still reason to hold them in jail, aware that whatever I say overwhelms me and I missthe option is to discharge could be interpreted as sour you very much. But onward them back to the street. grapes, criticism or inability we go. People who commit crimes to accept responsibility for So what about those whose due to mental illness and/or addiction need strong advocacy for ongoing supportive care within their communities, not jail, but that's where they end up. The burden then falls on jail staff to act as de facto clinicians, which is not only unfair, it's dangerous and unethical.' My solution was to build a crisis stabilization center staffed by professionals and community members trained in how to manage psychiatric emergencies as many other California counties have done with Mental Health Services Act dollars. Most counties lack the financial resources to build such centers, and many communities have fear around including people with mental illness as part of the fabric of their communities. But when people lack a sense of purpose or belonging within their communities, and when poverty and unemployment limit everyone's capacity to cope, the incidence of mental illness and addiction rises. The state of California's position is that consumers of mental health and addiction services have the right and responsibility to have a voice in creating strengths-based programs and services and it is in everyone's best interest to increase each community's awareness and capacity in order to avoid hospitalization, homelessness and unnecessary jail time. Unfortunately, many smaller, rural counties have limited financial resources to make significant progress toward building sustainable systems of care quickly enough to keep up with the need. Crisis management sucks up a lot of energy, leaving little time for planning ahead, which makes See Pier, page 9B Forest management policy affects crucial water availability The impacts of California's historic drought are becoming clear with each dry month. The UC Davis Center for Watershed Sciences recently estimated the ongoing drought is costing our state a staggering $2.2 billion and the loss of over 17,000 jobs. As our elected officials look for solutions, it's critical they look to the forests and reconsider well-intentioned policies that are reducing the quality and quantity of our limited water resources. California's watersheds are a primary source of our water supplies and the headwaters of these watersheds are WHERE I STAND BILL WICKMAN SPOKESPERSON, SUSTAINABLE FOREST ACTION COALITION located in our rural counties. The current "hands-off' approach to management of our federally owned forests is resulting in several unintended consequences. Due to a century of fire suppression, these forests have become overgrown, dense and more vulnerable to wildfire, insects and disease. When coupled with climate change, the increasing intensity of wildfires is destroying the very ecosystems and watersheds our federal laws and regulations were thought to protect and preserve. Some environmental groups- believe that "nature should take its course" when it comes to our forests. They commonly sue the federal government to prevent implementation of forest restoration projects, including those designed to contain the threat of fees in the future. This constant threat of litigation prevents the federal government from actively managing our forests and watersheds. Over time, these lawsuits come with a cost. Each summer, Californians are witnessing species, watersheds, forest resources and recreational opportunities destroyed or greatly impacted. These groups have been extremely successful in . decreasing restoration on federal forestlands. Over the past 20 years, we've seen the impact of this policy shift in many of our rural, forested communities that have not economically recovered from over-regulation rel ited to the northern and California spotted owl and other species. Now our federal forests are growing more trees than they can naturally sustain, and this has serious implications for our environment. In California there are 8:3 million acres of suitable productive forestland in the California Forest Service region. The annual net growth on these acres is 3.73 billion board feet and of that, 846 million board feet die each year from overcrowding. This means that 23 percent of forest growth goes to waste and becomes fuel for future wildfires. With watershed restoration and forest thinning consuming only 9 percent of annual net growth of our federal forests, it's no wonder that we have seen such a drastic loss of water yield into our watersheds and state water systems. There is a growing body of research that addresses forestry, water loss and climate change issues. Everyone understands that trees consume a lot of water, but we are beginning to quantify the impacts when forests are overgrown. Northern Arizona University's Ecological Restoration Institute found that thinning thick and See Wickman, page 8B to the Guidelines for Letters All letters must contain an address and a phone number. We publish only one letter per week per person and only one letter per person per month regarding the same subject. We do not publish third-party, anonymous, or open letters. Letters must be limited to a maximum o]'300 words. The editor will cut any letter in excess of 300 words. The deadline is Friday at 3p.m. (Deadlines may change due to holidays.) Letters may be taken to any of Feather Publishing's offices, sent via fax to 283-3952 or e-mailed to dmcdonald@plumasnews.com. Long-term care I agree with the Wednesday, July 30, letter to the editor that said we need a new senior housing facility. This should encompass small apartments, assisted living quarters, long-term care and an adjacent Alzheimer's section. As we have all noticed, our U.S. population everywhere is becoming increasingly "62 and older." And that is happening in Quincy as well. Our Plumas County Community Development Commission should embark on this endeavor -- with vigilance -- very Soon. Gordon Glain Quincy Crisis team a good idea I believe the suggestion by CHP Commander Lt. Joe Edwards to establish a local crisis team to address the problem of folks with mental health issues to be a good idea. Several years ago, an incident north of Paradise involving two law enforcement personnel and an alleged individual with mental health problems resulted in the deaths of al! three. I believe there was an incident in Portola recently that might have been resolved differently. While it is easy to second-guess unfortunate happenings and say "what if," I think having a crisis team available might help in preventing such future events occurring. John H. Babcock Paradise Jail is unsafe I read with great interest the 2013-14 Grand Jury Report, particularly the section on the Plumas County Jail Inspection. Under "Recommendations,", the Jury indicates the Board of Supervisors and Sheriff need to make it a priority to continue to explore and secure funding for a new jail. As a former member of the jury, I am familiar with some of the significant issues that relate to the present jail facility. Several weeks ago, an article in the newspaper referred to a discussion of a possible joint venture between the Plumas County Sheriffs Department and the California Highway Patrol to build a new joint facility in Plumas County. Because of a letter submitted by Jim Judd, candidate for Plumas County District 5 Supervisor, Joe Farrow, the CHP Commissioner, agreed to hold a meeting with Sheriff Hagwood to further explore this idea. Previously, the CI-IP indicated they were moving in a different direction and had no desire ' to discuss a joint effort. Unfortunately, rather than actively supporting this ' meeting, our current District 5 Supervisor chose to throw cold water on the offer by proclaiming the CHP "is much further along in its efforts; it would not make sense fOr them to stop their progress just to wait for us to catch up." One has to wonder how this type of attitude comports with leadership. Last December, Mr. Judd and I toured the jail facility accompanied by Sheriff Hagwood and two of his deputies. With no exaggeration, the jail conditions' are unsafe, exposing correctional officers and those incarcerated there to hazardous situations. It's high time the Board of Supervisors address this problem. Jim Judd is the kind of proactive supervisor Plumas County needs to keep our focus on this idea and many others facing us. I urge the voters in District 5 to vote for Jim this November. Bryan Hansen Graeagle Defensible space Defensible Space is kind of a misnomer. Being defensible would suggest that someone or some fire agency will be available to defend your structures from a spreading wildffEe. This is more than likely not going to be the situation. For example: if a fire were burning towards a community with 1,000 homes that would be threatened. Let's say we need at least one fire engine for each home, this begs the question how long will it take 1,000 fee engines to get to anywhere in Plumas County. Do you see the problem? Your structures need to be in an area with a vegetation profile that will be able to withstand a fee front passing without anyone being there to defend it. Firefighters will do amazing things to save your home. But do you want to put them at such a risk unless you have defensible space. I believe your answer would be NO. You as a property owner have to remove or manipulate the forest vegetation on property under your control mostly because it is the right thing to do for you and fEe fighters, not because of some public resource code (PRC 4291). Most of our forested lands are overgrown and overcrowded with typical forest plants; and these plants need to be thinned and trimmed so you can be safe from wildfire. A 100-foot clearing can be sufficient for most situations, but you- are welcome to clean and clear any or all or your land. It is especially important to clear areas downhill from your spot. This can prevent fire from racing uphill, which is what fires like to do. It is ridiculous that this had to be legislated so that people will do the right thing, and prepare the land for a possible approaching fire. The fire problem in this area is not a matter of if but of when. If you don't follow this law, you are endangering your home, your life and our firefighters' lives. Dave Rudolph Wildland firefighter 1969-2001 USFS retired Portola Forest preservation There were several uplifting articles in last week's newspaper. The article on expanding Plumas County public transit routes illustrates how government can provide much needed services to allow greater mobility and freedom in people's lives. Plumas Motor Supply should be commended for installing a solar electric system. Obviously, they have embraced the future and are doing their part to insure there is one. Samantha Hawthorne wrote an inspiring article about Plumas County's dark Skies and clean air and how fitting it is for stargazing. With our clean air, our majestic and forested mountains, and our abundant lakes and rivers, Plumas County is breathtakingly beautiful. Which brings me to the PlumasNews.com (July 10) article about how Sierra Institute continues to push their devastating biomass energy scheme on the Indian Valley Community Services District (and other entities in Plumas County). Sierra institute wants IVCSD to enter into a joint loan agreement to finance this biomass plant. Do you really think this is all about 'making the forest healthy' and 'reduce the risk of wildfn'es'? Sure, a few jobs would be created. But consider, Sierra Institute (and the other profiteers) plot to have nine biomass plants operating in Plumas County along with a chip processing facility for a period of 20 years. To support this demand, this forest thinning results in near clear cutting of our forests for industrial firewood. There's no scientific proof that thinning makes forests healthy or reduces wildfire. Forests have and will always burn. What there is proof of however is that forests are critical to sustaining life. Forests sequester carbon, produce oxygen, facilitate the water cycle and filter our critical water supply. With the severe effects of global warming becoming more apparent, now, more than ever, we need to preserve intact as much of the forest as possible. Mark Mihevc Graeagle Political correctness illness Political correctness is a dreaded mental illness to most conservatives. Democrats suffer being "PC" because to do otherwise would cause them to think. Obama Care is "the law of the land," and the Supreme Court has upheld it Constitutionality. It is also "the law of the land," to not enter this country illegally, yet we don't enforce those laws. Why? Don't the PC people follow the laws? According to an annual report from the USDA, middle-income parents of a child born in 2012 can expect to spend a whopping $241,080 until the child reaches age lB. This does not include college. Do the math. Every illegal child entering the United States will cost you, the taxpayer, a portion of the $241,080. Wouldn't it be cheaper to annex Guatemala, Honduras, E1 Salvador and Mexico, leave all the kids with their parents and send them U.S. taxpayer "fiat" money? I suggest we print billions of dollars and keep flying it down to Central America by the pallet. To hell with our veterans, our kids, schools, roads, bridges, electrical grid etc. Our compassion and money are what those kids need and there are many on the academic left that agree with this thinking. It would at least keep them from bringing rare "PC" diseases to our country. Aside: Help throw Harry Reid 0ut of power. Campaign for Senate candidates in states that we can win, send whatever money you can to those campaigns to defeat Democrats. R will not help to give money to California Republicans; it's a permanent, blue "entitlement" state. R's l ke giving reeds to a dead body. Trent Saxton Lake Davis Gold rules It has begun in earnest. The millions available to Tea Party candidates are doing their work. Karl Rove and the ever-present Koch brothers have singled out a popular and seemingly safe Democrat's seat and, with millions of dollars worth of unrelenting attack ads, have replaced the once-popular Democratic candidate with a Tea Party member, not for his virtues but by a flood of seemingly unlimited millions. The Tea Party member's seat was bought by the Golden Rule set down by the Supreme Court. He who has the gold rules, which is hardly the democracy that the founders of the nation envisioned. Salvatore Catalano Taylorsville Contact your elected officials,.. PLUMAS COUNTY SUPERVISORS - 520 Main Street, Room 309, Quinc~ CA 95971; (530) 283-6170; FAX: (530) 283-6288; E-Mail: pcbs@countyofplumas.com. Individual supervisors can also be e-mailed from links on the county website, countyofplumas.com PRESIDENT - Barack Obama, the White House, 1600 Pennsylvania Ave., NW Washington, D.C. 20500. (202) 456-1414. Fax: 202-456-2461. E-mail: whitehouse~gov/contact / U.S. SENATOR - Dianne Feinstein (D), 331 Hart Senate Office Bldg., Washington, D.C. 20510. (202) 224-3841; FAX: 202-228-3954; TFY/TDD: (202) 224-2501. District Office: One Post Street, Suite 2450, San Francisco, CA 94104; Phone: (415) 393-0707; Fax: (415) 393-0710 Website: feinstein.senate.gov. U.S. SENATOR - Barbara Boxer (D). District Office: 501 1 St., Suite 7-600, Sacramento, CA 95814. (916) 448-2787; FAX (916) 448-2563; OR 112 Hart Bldg., Washington, D.C. 20510. (202) 22@3553. FAX (202) 228-0454. U.S. REPRESENTATIVE, 1ST DIST. - Doug LaMalfa. 506 Cannon HOB, Washington, D.C. 20515. (202) 225-3076. lamalfa.house.gov. DISTRICT OFFICES: 1453 Downer St., Suite #A, Oroville, CA 95965; 2885 Churn Creek R., Suite #C, Redding, CA 96002. STATE SENATOR, 1st DIST. - Ted Gaines. State Capitol, Room 3070, Sacramento, CA 95814. (916) 651-4001, FAX: (916) 32@2680. El Dorado Hills-Constituent Service Center:. 4359 Town Center Boulevard, Suite 112, E1 Dorado Hills, CA 95762. (916) 933-7213, FAX (916) 933'7234; Kedding Constituent Service Center: 1670 Market St., Suite 244, Redding, CA 96001, (530) 225-3142, FAX (530) 225-3143. STATE ASSEMBLYMAN, 1ST DIST. - Brian Dahle, State Capitol, Room 2174, Sacramento, CA 94249, (916) 319-2001; FAX (916) 319-2103. District Office, 2080 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: gov.ca.gov/ (916) 445-2841. FAX: (916) 558-3160.