Wed. Jun 12th, 2024

Opinion Piece By Donna Westfall – June 13, 2018 –

Something smells very fishy about the recall effort against Supervisor Bob Berkowitz. 

Jesse Davis, the Vice Chairman of the Cannabis Working Group has mailed a notice of recall against Berkowitz.  Last I looked, Jesse Davis lived in McKinleyville, so what’s he doing in Del Norte County politics? I’ve known Jesse for a couple of years.  I recognize him as someone that is knowledgeable about marijuana, the laws, and the history.  If I understood him right, he’s a local grower of marijuana. I like Jesse and we agree on more items than we disagree. But, I have cautioned  him not to call politicians names when he gets upset…. like calling Bob Berkowitz a liar.  I would prefer if Jesse always acted professionally. Unfortunately, his actions did not fall in line with what I consider professionalism. So,when I saw his name and return address on the envelope being in Arcata and sent certified mail to Sup. Berkowitz, and then took the time to read the recall notification, I was wondering why he’s even involved.  I was upset. I am upset.

Also, when I read over the actual notice of recall, I was baffled.  I can’t see any specific reasons for a recall.  He may as well have said, “Blah, blah, blah, blah and some more blah.”

Usually in a recall, there are allegations of wrongdoing like missing money. Or you’ll read accusations of the person having sex with the wrong person.  Recently, a recall against Democratic Senator, Josh Newman was successful because he was in favor of the gas tax. Incidentally, he was replaced with a Republican, former Assemblywoman, Ling Ling Chang who is against the gas tax.

But there is none of that in this statement of grounds for the recall against Berkowitz. The statement says that partisan politics has no place in local government, yet there is no allegation in the statement anywhere accusing Berkowitz of being partisan. Zero, zip, nada.

So what’s the real reason for the recall? Let’s look a little deeper.

When we evaluate the 20 people who signed the recall petition, we find defeated former Supervisor Finigan’s dirty fingerprints all over this. A full one third of the signers are either family members of Finigan or signers of his petitions in previous campaigns.

The proponents of this recall will have to get 751 signatures of those who are registered in the 5th district for this to go to an election in November.  If  50 plus one percent of those vote to recall Supervisor Berkowitz, there is another ballot with the names of those who would want to succeed Berkowitz.  We assume that there would only be one name on that ballot.  Yep, you guessed it.  It would be David Finigan.

We believe that Finigan just couldn’t wait until the year 2020 to challenge Berkowitz, he would rather have a stalking horse be the titular head of the recall  and then when it’s successful, Finigan would regain his seat on the board of supervisors (BOS).

When contacted for a comment, Berkowitz had this to say:

  • “For the last year and a half my one goal has been to help make our county a better place to live, work and raise a family.
  • I am proud of our board’s accomplishments.
  • After years of inaction, we’ve begun the process of replacing Last Chance Grade.
  • We have motivated Sutter Coast Hospital to find a new physicians group that will lower the prices you pay doctors.
  • We’ve reworked the county budget so that we have a new funding source that will provide for more clean ups of blighted areas.
  • We were successful in getting more federal dollars for our  local schools and county roads.
  • After months without air service, we now have regular air service via Contour Airlines.
  • Our county recently won a national award for its “Daily Town Hall Meeting” where you can interact with a supervisor on a daily basis.
  • This is just a small list that your board of supervisors has accomplished in the last year and a half.
  • Now there  are some who want to recall two supervisors and send our county back into the dark ages of no action and total paralysis. The voters of District 5 can prevent that by just saying NO to the recall.”
  • We at the hope that the voters will see this for what it is, an attempt to steal a seat on the BOS.

After all David Finigan is no stranger to the political system having been caught and fined by the Fair Political Practices Commission already for having his hand in the cookie jar so to speak, just like Martha McClure and Lori Cowan.

While I like Finigan personally, this publication endorsed  Bob Berkowitz for 5th District Supervisor in 2016 just  because of the kind of sleazy politics Finigan brought to the BOS. I hated the way he treated his fellow supervisors.  I don’t anticipate he would be any different if he were to regain his seat. Certainly Chair Howard is no different, if anything he’s worse since the election.  And I think I’ve implied he acts more and more like a dictator. If not, I’ll put up some fresh video from the June 12th BOS meeting shortly.

There you have it. Recall smelling fishy?  God yes!

19 thoughts on “Recall smells fishy!”
  1. Lets just wait and see if the recalls get enough signatures. It doesn’t matter who started it. All this rhetoric can be ignored.

  2. Wow, so much to talk about! Hope to see you on Sunday Sam. I read some good points, and some really stupid ones, some libel worthy of a lawsuit, tragic ignorance and voices of experience.
    Linda Sutter, I’m guessing you were trespassing on someone’s property; I have no pond or plastic and my homestead is no where near the place you described. Please be careful trespassing in the woods on unknown properties, you are likely to be arrested or mistaken for an intruder. I am not a felon and you are an awful person, I wish I did not know you but I do hope you get well soon. Don’t worry, I’m not going to sue you, YET.
    Sam, you have the best questions, I respect your effort to understand. My intentions have nothing to do with cannabis policy or the CWG. I am NOT a proponent of the recall, I am an advocate. All I did was fill out some forms and run an ad, it makes no difference what district I’m in. It’s just like voting, only more work. I can’t understand why anyone would be upset about an election in a representative republic. You are searching for something to push against with your logic, but nothing is there! There are many reasons to recall the two, none of which is worth mentioning. There may be an unexpected election, people will vote, there will be an outcome, period. I have no problem with the board about cannabis policy, they have supported everything we have presented! Are you not paying attention? I am not in opposition to Bob or Roger’s policy positions, because they don’t have any! That’s the problem Sam. All five supervisors are vulnerable to recall. Newly elected officials can’t be recalled till some time has passed, can’t remember how long. If Bob and Roger’s constituents support them, then they have nothing to worry about, right?
    Wesley Nunn, I do not expect anyone to take my word for anything. I have been accused of name calling and am simply saying that it’s not name calling when you know that someone is lying. Bob lied on the air with Paul Critz regarding facts and information about the CWG and the ban vote. You clearly are uninformed about the exchange. It’s all audio recorded and I have emails to prove the lie, cheers!

    1. Hopefully, I will be allowed this once to reply to Mr. Davis. If those are indirect threats good luck. “someone could mistake you for an intruder?” and you don’t plan to “sue” me yet. You have no grounds. You were arrested for possession of a machine gun in Ventura County, California. the case was dismissed, but, you pled not guilty.

      The mere fact you were arrested for the possession of a machine gun is questionable behavior as well as character. To deny the charges exist enforces your questionable behavior and character. You certainly should not be serving on a board appointed by supervisors. Our county has enough misgivings we don’t need to have people like you on a board of any kind.

      Additionally Mr. Davis, when did you start getting the impression that because you were appointed (key word here) to a board that you decide who gets to be a supervisor? That is absolutely laughable. I will be requesting at the next Cannabis meeting that you step down from this position entirely. Your contention tactics are self serving.

      I believe the remaining cannabis working group board members will do just fine without you.

      1. “Decide who gets to be a supervisor?” What are you talking about? Filing paperwork to call for a vote is empowering those who may or may not feel the same about a recall to take action. Who decides to try and deface a hard-working family man that works countless hours voluntarily to encourage that our county move forward with laws that were passed by majority both in our county and the state ?
        What pedastal do you stand upon to question The Universal Declaration of Human Rights, article 11? It states a person is innocent until proven guilty. Are you an adversary to the human rights bestowed upon us by our very own court system. Your opinions have always been questionable and now you are really stepping in to a real of insanity.

  3. Anyone who doesn’t support Roger Gitlin or Bob Berkowitz is best described as the best description of a “libtard”. There is no excuse for trying to remove the very people who have helped improve the community.

    Everyone who signs the recall will get what they deserve, which is a city that continues to fester in corruption, illegal expenditures, cronyism, false arrests with political reasoning, increased taxation, double taxation, conversion of civil matters to punitive, the legal theft of property, insider bidding and private purchases through rigged auctions, more failing city streets, more buildings and properties riddled with graffiti and trash, increase in homelessness and drug usage, failure to maintain schools, increase in city and county debts and increase of municipal codes designed to specifically penalize normal and legal behavior (like enjoying the beach in the evenings is now illegal inside City limits — people warned cited by CCPD and Sheriff for parking at beaches after dark) and so much more. The list goes on and on and on and on.

    At least Sup. Gitlin is a leader in improving the city’s image and speaks up when people rights are being violated, such as when he became aware of cut microphones at city council meetings. At least Bob Berkowitz has been working hard to ensure that Del Norte County gets to keep it’s continually failing road and working to get it improved.

    The push to remove these people is a huge indicator that people at the top of the food chain in Del Norte have a lot to hide and don’t like the progress being made by “outsiders” who were voted in by the people. That’s the thing: They were voted in. Why now are they being pushed out? Did they do something wrong or illegal? NO! Did other city leaders do anything wrong or illegal? YES. Look at people like Martha McClure. That was big news that hit every major newspaper in the State not long ago.

    It’s like our current President being accused of every wrongdoing under the sun in an attempt to not allow him to get the votes to become elected. Yet, the very people working hard to push him out had a LOT to hide. A couple days ago big news broke about this, with the FBI showing serious bias against Trump and allowed Hillary to get away with various criminal acts. It’s not okay for this to happen.

    Not all democrats are stupid, but many are. Sadly, it seems that most democrats in Del Norte are also “Libtards”. Many democrats have seen how much damage their own have caused and decided to change parties as they’ve got very left. Maybe the real reason weed was made legal was to garner support from the more liberal minded for the democrats since it seems that most pot users tend to be liberal.

    I encourage anyone who reads this who is considering signing the petition to think before signing. If you plan to continue to live and work in Del Norte, it is in your best interest to support the very people who actually improve the community and are true leaders.

    Thank you.

  4. Jesse Davis calling people liars is like calling the kettle black don’t you think. Jesse stated at the June 12th BOS meeting he registered to vote right before this election as a Del Norte County resident. What address did he use? 418 or 424 Elk Valley Road? His address up off Feather Canyon Road is not deliverable and he can’t use a postal box.

    Since Gov. Jerry Brown changed the law, I believe in 2017, felons are now allowed to vote. My research shows a Jesse Davis as a registered felon. If I was Sups Roger Gitlin or Bob Berkowitz, I wouldn’t want to shake your hand either, however; Chairman Chris Howard, (which I believe is your co-conspirator) will and does. I think I know what your angle is here; divide and conquer as it benefits you, Jesse Davis, and your cohorts.

    On Jesse’s property off of Feather Canyon Road, I saw that he is unlawfully collecting water in a man-made pond built and lined with heavy black plastic. I was up there with a friend yesterday. didn’t see or hear his dogs.

    Jesse, Where you got the money for all that stuff is telling. You’ve been in the marijuana business a long time before it was legal. In my opinion, you sir are a parasite who is not credible in anything you say or do. We are all watching. And hopefully, you are not successful in your endeavors.

    By the way, the governor does not reappoint someone if the recalls are unsuccessful. They will keep their seats.

    1. Off topic, but i’ll address your response. Especially because you chose your nickname as “intheknow”.

      Anyone who is not on probation or parole who is an American citizen who’s registered to vote has always, in California and most other States, been able to vote. In some States a person must go before a magistrate to restore their right to vote, among other rights such as being able to restore their right to obtain and possess firearms. Why so many Americans think that felons can’t vote is beyond me. I guess that comes down to being uneducated about the topic.

      Additionally, your “research” into Jesse Davis was probably a Google search. If that was the case, you are setting up yourself for one hell of a lawsuit. Just because a person is “charged” with a criminal offense does NOT mean they are a convicted felon. Even if they are convicted of a criminal offense, that doesn’t mean they were convicted of a felony. Additionally, even if they are convicted of a felony it is almost certainly the case these days because of prison and jail overcrowding that people are given deals in which they can have their felony conviction reduced to a misdemeanor upon completion of probation if they’ve avoided going to prison in the deal. A misdemeanor in many States can be easily wiped off a record after a period of time if the person has kept their nose clean for some time.

      I would be very wary of trusting the Internet as your source for “research” on a person. As a convicted felon myself, I was forced to identify people behind various mugshot websites in order to expose them in an effort to get lawsuits and the Justice system involved in addressing the false information they often publish. For example, time and time again my information including my address has been incorrect for many years on end. If you want to do your research on me, you need to visit an actual government sanctioned website. Not some shady extortion website or various news articles who also often don’t get the information right.

      Through my response I hope I helped shed some light on this topic. Be careful in referencing material found online. I’ve successfully already helped to bring several people to Justice over false information published about me and others online.

    2. So.. Donna posted his address today, and you and ‘a friend’ were out there yesterday looking for illegal ponds? thats creepy

  5. I think the voters will make some good decisions. I’m looking forward to the alternatives.
    Roger and Bob’s strategy and behavior has actually unified Del Norte against them.
    By the way I remember Bob complaining about the Contour Air Service and writing an OpEd against SB1 which provides those local road dollars that Bob now heralds!.

    Other than taking a picture In front of the Capitol building has Bob do as much as the other three and Senator Mike McGuire to advance funding for Last Chance Grade which is in his district?

  6. Bob is helping replace last chance, because of him we have air service, and he fans air in for us to breath, we would be nothing without Bob. The morning coffee for old farts is not a county program.

  7. Recalls are right up Bob and Rogers ally. Have fun guys, this is what dealing with you for these years have been like. Honesty is not upheld by law, we will make sure to keep em honest though, we know where law ends and ethics begin and this is where they become one.

  8. Thank you Donna for your polite inquiry and theory. I also like you and your willingness to support free speech. I live in Del Norte county and am registered to vote in district three. I also own a home in Humboldt and spend time there too. To answer Roger’s question, I registered in July of 2017, before I was appointed to the working group. I described Bob as a ‘liar’ because he said things that he knew were false with the intention of misleading people. That is the definition of a liar. I used the word correctly and it is not name calling, it is defining. I am more than willing to listen to Bob explain how and why his statements were true, but he has declined to address the matter at all.
    As for the recall, I started it myself with a phone call to the recorder’s office for information. I never told David Finigan about it. I paid for the publication with my own money. I created the notice and sent it to a few people who I thought would be interested and from there it spread rapidly. Within a week we had the required number of proponents for district one and five. There are more pages of signatures, I just turned in the ones I got first. I have no idea who would want to run for those seats and I don’t really care so long as they are solution oriented. If no one runs then the governor appoints a replacement. I suggest you ask David directly if he intends to run, I don’t think he does.
    I have no interest in accusing Bob or Roger of fantastic crimes to justify a recall. Their words and actions speak for themselves and I’m simply asking voters if they approve or not. Sorry to disappoint, but there’s really nothing interesting or fishy about it; just me exercising my political rights, similar to voting. The statement explains exactly what I would like to see in local government. In my personal observations, Bob and Roger are different but both seem to be overly focused on political calculations rather than policy creation. They need to work with what they have instead of trying break it. The cannabis working group is diverse in opinions, yet we are able to cooperate and meet in the middle for the sake of progress and the community. I see Bob and Roger often taking a hard stance on things in a way that is counterproductive to their own efforts. They are often in a minority position and could get a lot more of what they want simply by asking instead of forcing.
    Roger refuses to even shake my hand and Bob won’t speak to me publicly, even before the recall. I am always open to communication and reason, always holding an open mind, I hope they can share this place of trust with me.

    1. Jesse, Perhaps you can clear a bit of confusion up for me. You state that you are a resident in Del Norte County’s District #3, yet you have chosen the Supervisors in Districts #1 and #5 to target for your recall. I am not sure the relevance of your recalls if you are not in fact represented by either Supervisor. I am also curious about your statement that your concerns are that “they seem to be overly focused on political calculations (what ever that is supposed to mean) rather than policy creation (again please elaborate). Similarly, I am curious about the fact that you seem to be aware of the fact that in contentious issues they are invariably in the minority under the current composition of the board and you appear to be in opposition to their stances. So, if the votes of the remaining three supervisors, who are the majority, do not reflect your concept of policy creation, how is it that they have not drawn your recall notice. I mean your logic is puzzling. Supervisors in Districts #1 and #5 who have no power, according to you, and cannot create policy, are being recalled because they can not do what you expect of them. Mysterious sort of logic in my view, but perhaps you can steer me towards why you have not taken on Supervisors in District #2, #3, and #4 for their clear lack of policy creation particularly in light of your unhappiness with the Board in general over their lack of direction for the Cannibis Working Group as a whole that you chaired. Seems to me that it is their, being the majority vote, lack of policy creation that should be of concern. The minority vote by Supervisors from Districts #1 and #5 are completely irrelevant when it comes to policy creation whether the vote is 5-0 or 3-2. So I reiterate, what exactly is the point of your recall effort? If you are looking for inappropriate behavior, or improper conduct at a Board meeting, a closer look at your own Supervisor, who is also the Chairman I might point out, from District #3. He has the power to set the agenda as well as direct the course of events at each Board meeting and seems incapable of either, let alone set or create policy. Seems to me that your recall is misdirected, unless you are willing to subscribe to the notion that something else is going on here. I’d hate to think that you are engaging in personality conflict, something that the majority seems most proficient. If you would care to answer my concerns here or on my radio program on Sunday, you are most welcome.

    2. So, we’re supposed to take Jesse’s word that Bob’s a liar??? Forget it, Jesse. When someone claims someone else is lying, first thing I want to know is what was the lie. But you conveniently omit that part.

      Then you claim Bob declined to address your accusations. I don’t believe you because it’s been my experience Bob responds to everyone. I’ve also found Donna reports rather accurately. Other major gaps in your reply pretty well spell out who the liar is.

      Last, if you want ordinances changed regarding your cannabis grows and sales, placing it on the ballot is the proper way. Not recall. Your proceeding stinks of political agenda.

  9. You sure spent a lot of time and effort demeaning Davis for someone you claim to like. You say he acts unprofessional, and to not call politicians names whilst upset. Yet here you are doing the very same thing. You have good facts, take your crappy emotions out of this and write a professional article. It’s hard to take you seriously.

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