The following is a letter to the editor submitted by Mendocino County District 3 Supervisor John Haschak, published here as a column, in which he updates his constituents. We encourage the other supervisors to submit letters — we will happily publish them. You can see Haschak’s previous letters to his constituents here. The opinions expressed in this letter are the author’s, not those of The Mendocino Voice.
3rd District Supervisor’s Report
Our communities have endured lots of hardship in the last few years – wildfires, power shut-offs, and drought. Once again, these are very scary times and require that we pull together as a community. The coronavirus requires a sacrifice from all of us.
Although difficult, the intention of the Public Health Officer’s order to Shelter in Place is to create social distancing. Certainly there are essential activities that we need to do but the goal is to create social distancing so the virus is contained as much as possible. If we all take responsibility for our actions for the betterment of our community, we will survive this and be better because of it.
The Board of Supervisor meetings are now virtual meaning each Supervisor is in his or her location. We can conduct the meetings through the computer and your input can be given that way too. Essential county staff are balancing concerns for public health and safety while working long difficult hours and days. I greatly admire their dedication to public service.
The best place for local information is the County’s public health press releases. You can access this information at mendocinocounty.org or call  234-6052. The situation changes constantly and please heed the Health Officer’s orders for the good of our communities.
I read somewhere about the need for calm and hope. It seems appropriate in these times.
With drought conditions upon us, we are preparing for another fire season.
Sherwood Firewise Communities received a large CalFire grant ($447,024) to do vegetation management work all along Sherwood Road. This is an important project to keep our communities safe and kudos to Sherwood Firewise for their efforts. This work will go from Main St in Willits to where Sherwood Rd. meets Hwy 101 17 miles north of Willits as well as several miles of access routes on Ridge, Blue Lake and Timber Roads in the Brooktrails Fire District. Cal Fire and the three local fire departments from Willits, Laytonville and Brooktrails will all be involved in the planning and implementation to assure coordination with other activities.
I have been working with Sherwood Firewise Communities and County Counsel to provide consistent funding for maintaining and improving emergency ingress and egress routes out of one way in, one way out communities. This took a couple of steps forward. The BOS approved pursuing County Service Area 3 Zones of Benefit. Sherwood Firewise received a $10,000 grant from the Community Foundation of Mendocino County as well as $18,250 in Pro Bono legal assistance from a large law firm with experience in developing CSA Benefit Zones. This will all help to collaboratively accomplish this public safety work.
With Spring here and graduations coming up, I will be giving another round of scholarships to graduates who plan on entering public service. There will be 3 scholarships, one for Willits, Laytonville, and Round Valley, of $3,000 each. These will be $1,000 a year for 3 years of study. If you know of graduates going into public service, please have them contact their high school counselor.
As always, you can contact me at [email protected] or 707-972-4214.
Stay well with calm and hope.