Opinion Piece By Samuel Strait – May 23, 2018 – Wow, I guess I can’t say that anything has really changed in the last year and a half after spending another rather pointless two hours in the company of our five elected officials at the most recent Board of Supervisor’s meeting held Tuesday, May 22nd. I had hoped that the animosity that some Supervisors had for for their colleagues had become at least as tiresome as it is for the rest of the population of Del Norte County, but that does not appear to be the case. Hopefully this will serve to give those that didn’t attend a feeling for what did and didn’t happen.
Following the consent agenda, there began comments from the public about the usual suspects, the Board’s tabling of any action on SB 54, the trip to Japan by fifteen Del Norters led by who else but Chris Howard and Blake Inscore, and a few other bits and pieces. One had to grit one’s teeth over the constant miss representation by those few who spoke in support of ignoring the serious implications brought on by California’s passage of the bill. I doubt any supporter would recognize the long term effects that following Sacramento’s lead will have on the State and Del Norte County’s citizenry with regard to those seeking to come to California and those seeking to leave the Golden State. As California continues to become more progressive and even crazier, those that have had enough will pack their bags and depart, leaving near-do-wells and illegal immigrants to fill those population spots left vacant by citizens who made California the Golden State. I find it hard to believe that our elected representatives would not take a stance one way or the other, after all that is precisely what they are elected and paid to do, show some leadership and put the controversy to rest. Not happening. Three Board members insist on letting some one else carry their water as they claim falsely that it will cost the County bucketsful of money. I guess a major crime will have to occur or a reversal in court will take place before our Board of Supervisor’s wake up.
As far as the trip to Japan, we heard how important it was for this mob to go. I was not certain just exactly what that importance was other than some kind of touchy feely claim that you had to be there to understand the importance that such a trip would engendered. Apparently we rubes in the lily bulb fields will have to take the word of the self appointed “experts” that this circus will pay off in the future. Of course any of the How, What, and When was conveniently glossed over so us rubes would not have “too” much information to understand what a colossal waste of time this has been from the starting point when adults co opted a benign youth activity, returning a fishing boat to Japan, into this mess. It is not like we don’t have much experience dealing with Tsunamis or their effects. If local politicians want to hob knob with the Japanese and claim valuable cultural experience and knowledge maybe they ought to resign and move to Japan. Message to Blake Inscore and Chris Howard, this is not the kind of governance that the citizens of this County signed up for, so kindly cease and desist. We do not want to pay for what YOU deem important to this County, that is up to all of us rubes.
From there the Board moved on to “scheduled items”, opioid intervention, report on Cannabis from the working group, Port-a-Potties for the Fourth, another transfer of private property out of the tax base, and another bit on cannabis proposed ordinances. At that point following the property transfer, I’d had enough of this particular meeting. I find it extremely troubling that the Board by a vote of 5-0 authored a letter in support of the transfer of 135 acres of private land to become yet another park in Del Norte County. While I don’t exactly know all the details, it would seem to me that any further loss of developable and taxable land in Del Norte County, less that 20% remaining in private ownership and counting down, is another step towards the decline of this County. The claim was made that the tax loss would be minimal, yet future change of land use and serious development might have changed that scenario to something very different. Of course Hambro’s might have had to wait for awhile for their pound of flesh. What really is tough to swallow is that it hasn’t been that long ago when the Tolowa dee-ni nation came before the Board wanting to consolidate tribal lands in the Smith River area and were denied. The reason by the Board then…….. Loss of a minimal amount of tax revenue. Guess the Tolowa dee-ni nation should get Hambros on board if they want to do a property transfer in the future.
There were other items on the Board’s agenda, but I think this sampling should give any smart person the idea that things need to change if this community is to survive. Don’t forget to Vote on June 5th. It would be a good time to make some of those necessary changes in leadership for the County.