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.
Ground was broken on the Highway 162 multipurpose trail in Covelo. It has been a needed dream for many years. The trail will provide a safe walking/biking pathway to town.
FEMA added Mendocino County to its list of counties with declared major emergencies for the February and March snowstorms. Mendocino County was approved for the Individual Assistance program which allows residents with damage to homes from the snows, fallen trees, etc. to receive financial assistance for their recovery. FEMA will be back in Mendocino County helping with the application process as soon as a location has been identified for a disaster recovery center. In the meantime, impacted residents can register online at https://www.disasterassistance.gov or by calling 800-621-3362.
The Board unanimously joined me in rescinding the Public Records Request ordinance. Charging people to get public records went against the spirit of open, transparent government. The County was being threatened with multiple lawsuits. Last month, I wrote in my report that I was awaiting another Supervisor to join me in my calls to rescind the ordinance. I am glad it finally happened.
A 171 unit housing development was approved for the south side of Ukiah. 39 of the units will be for senior housing and 13 will be moderate income. It is outside of city limits. With housing in short supply throughout the County, this is a welcome step forward. After approval by the Board, the Project Manager called me to say that the developer is interested in working in Willits. I directed him to City Planning. In my conversations with the City of Willits, this would be welcomed.
The cannabis department continues to streamline the process. I chair the General Government Committee and we met twice in April to eliminate duplicative processes especially if the state has a similar process, get the administration of the permitting process fully functioning, and clean up the department’s budget mess. Two major grants had to be revised but competent staff are working on these issues. With the County and State working together to get people to their State annual licensure, there is a feeling of optimism that these efforts will work.
The Sherwood Firewise Council had a 5th Anniversary party. As usual, it was informative and community building and great to be back in person. Kudos to all the volunteers who are working to make our communities safer. The SFC has received more than a million dollars in grants to create emergency access routes and defensible space and educate the community. Together we are working on several significant grant applications.
My monthly table talk is on May 11 at 10:00 at the Brickhouse Coffee in Willits. Please reach out to me at [email protected] or 707-972-4214.