Fifth District Humboldt County Supervisor Ryan Sundberg has appointed former Yurok Tribal Chair Susan Masten to the County Planning Commission. Masten will replace Dennis Mayo.
Details galore at the Journal blogthing.
Despite a recent request by County Supervisors that Bruce Emad rescind his letter of resignation from the Humboldt County Planning Commission, the Board voted today to put Emad on the back burner while it considers other applicants.
Chairman Mark Lovelace, who voted no on the sudden change of direction, called the move “insulting and disrespectful.” He said today’s “total reversal” follows the board’s unanimous direction two weeks ago to plead with Emad and fellow commissioner Mary Gearheart to stay for an additional year while the General Plan Update is finished.
New Supervisors Virginia Bass and Ryan Sundberg said their vote to ask Emad and Gearhart to rescind their resignations came before they knew what they were doing because of their freshman positions on the board.
Bass said she would like to find an applicant willing to serve the full 4-year term. Sundberg said the Board should follow the usual process of accepting applications.
Bass and Sundberg’s comments were supported by Realtors and members of HumCPR, who have long criticized the GPU process. Some of them said they were applying for the position.
Coincidentally, Bass and Sundberg were largely supported by this same group during the recent elections. But Bass bristled at any notion that she has a hidden agenda. She argued that she’s simply new and clueless.
Lovelace noted conflicting sentiments in the community about the General Plan Update process. He said that while there are complaints about it taking too long, any attempt to give it a time frame is similarly criticized.
Supervisor Jimmy Smith said he was concerned that Emad would take offense to the sudden reversal.
- Sundberg’s DUI (616 comments) — We begin our walk down memory lane with a story that broke records for most comments ever received on a single post on the Herald. The shocking revelation that a candidate for Humboldt County Supervisor had a twice-the-limit DUI followed by the giant media fail to report it in a timely manner. The Herald broke the story late on a Friday night as mail-in ballots were already making their way to the elections office. Despite the late posting, the proverbial fan was hit, spattering the walls on impact. But the controversy easily slid off the back of Ryan Sundberg who will be sworn in as Fifth District Supervisor on January 3, 2011.
- Freshwater Pulp Gets the Go-Ahead (503 comments) — Despite the headline, the pulp mill is now being dismantled after this particular prospect for good-paying jobs and local industry never got off the ground.
- Bass Campaigner Threatens Bonnie (484 comments) — The right-wing’s ultra-fanatical rhetoric against then-Supervisor Bonnie Neely erupted in the unchecked political passions of one young man who unwisely left a threatening phone message from a Google-able phone number at the campaign HQ. This misguided fellow surfaced again recently with an editorial proclaiming the anti-big box movement is dead and that a glorious future of jobs jobs jobs at Home Depot and other such saviors await us, hallelujah and amen.
- About this sacred zoo business (323 comments) — The “public safety vs. Sequoia Park Zoo” took a turn for the religious when the Times-Standard declared the zoo a “sacred” site.
- Healthy Humboldt running general plan radio ads (306 comments) — The title speaks for itself. A liberal org disseminates facts in order to educate the public on the county’s contentious General Plan Update. All hell breaks loose.
- Hello Arkleyville (306 comments) Here we have a tie. Even before all the election night votes were counted it was clear that our next four years will be like a carnival ride at Arkleyworld. Cotton candy Now!
- Tea Partier Challenges Chesbro (274 comments) — But in the California that lies outside Eureka, the tea party lost big in California on election night.
- Live blogging the Balloon Track zoning measure debate (273 comments) — The Arkley revolution to put Measure N on the November ballot. The promise of “Marina Center Now!” and its big box utopia has yet to materialize.
- Bonnie bashers head to Sacramento (246 comments) — Their mission: crash a campaign fundraiser. The result: nothing that night, but Neely lost re-election and the zealots have declared her the root of all problems that ever faced a developer anywhere and whose all mighty powers must be guarded against with garlic and crosses and fervent prayers to city hall.
- NCJ on the DUI (241 comments) — We conclude our list where we began, with the DUI (not) heard ’round the county — until many months later. The strange saga of a candidates criminal proceedings became a tepid tale about media’s failure to report and, in the case of the NCJ, the decision to withhold the story until after the Primary Election.
The Humboldt County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously Tuesday to support the nomination of Supervisor Mark Lovelace to fill the North Coast seat on the California Coastal Commission — but the issue provoked tense talk and finger-pointing.
Lovelace asked the Board to support his nomination, but suggested any letter of recommendation wait until the middle of December in case other elected officials step forward.
Supervisor Jill Duffy strongly criticized Board Chairman Clif Clendenen for not contacting Supervisor-elects Virginia Bass and Ryan Sundberg to find if they are interested in the position. She said the “games that have been played are over the top,” but when Lovelace responded she defensively said she wasn’t accusing him.
A lengthy public comment period followed with all speakers asking the board to hold off on supporting the nomination to allow other elected officials to step up.
Fortuna City Councilman Dean Glaser said he would throw his hat in the ring if it would help delay the process. The colorful Councilman whose commitment to confusion is well known, said he is “as neutral as you can possibly get.”
Bass said she would like the opportunity to be considered for the position, but in traditional Bass fashion expressed confusion about how or if she could put her name forward. She said her time as mayor and on the Eureka City Council gave her some knowledge about issues facing coastal communities. But it’s clear following her performance over the last year that she is relatively clueless about the operations and goals of the Coastal Commission.
“It’s not our job to solicit nominees, its the job of the nominees to step forward,” Lovelace said. “I’m not asking the Board to nominate me and only me. I’m simply asking for a consideration of my nomination at this time and leave the door open for others.”
Supervisor Bonnie Neely — who will leave her position on the CCC in January — amended her motion in support of Lovelace to direct the County Administrative Office to work with the City Selection Committee to identify other possible nominees. The Board will revisit the issue at its December 14th meeting.
The League of Women Voters (LWV) will moderate a debate between 4th District Supervisorial candidates Bonnie Neely and Virginia Bass tonight from 7:00 – 8:30 at the Wharfinger.
The debate will be co-sponsored by the Humboldt Coalition for Property Rights (HumCPR), a group that strongly supports Bass — and she them. The group’s talking points on the General Plan Update (GPU) regularly fall out of her mouth despite her shocking admission in May that she hadn’t thought much about the Update. HumCPR chairman Lee Ulansey is a big donor to the Bass campaign.
Bass attempted to appoint Ulansey to the Eureka Planning Commission last year, and will likely appoint him to the County Planning Commission if elected.
The LWV and HumCPR will also sponsor a debate between 5th District Supervisor candidates on Tuesday in McKinleyville at Azalea Hall. In this race, too, HumCPR has already chosen its favored candidate, Ryan Sundberg, over Patrick Cleary.
The latest HumCPR newsletter includes answers from local candidates to CPR questions. In addition to editorial comments inserted into some candidates’ answers, Ulansey huffs and puffs at responses by both Neely and Cleary in his introduction. In typical Chicken Little fashion, he implies Neely and Cleary “won’t even consider your wishes” if elected. And hey, the sky is falling.
The debates will not be broadcast live but will air on Access Humboldt at a later date.
The Humboldt Herald gets a mention in Marcy Burstiner’s long-awaited assessment of the media’s treatment of 5th District Supervisor candidate Ryan Sundberg’s DUI.
More specifically, she disagrees with the Journal’s decision to withhold the news.
“Journalists should respect the intelligence of their readers and give them the opportunity to decide if information is relevant,” Burstiner writes.
The same week Ryan Sundberg announced his candidacy for 5th district Humboldt County Supervisor, a bench warrant was issued when he failed to appear in court for DUI charges.
Stemming from a Dec. 7, 2009 incident, Sundberg was charged with 2 counts of Driving Under the Influence with a special allegation of blood alcohol levels of .15 or higher. The legal limit is .08.
Sundberg’s campaign announcement came on January 22. The warrant was issued on January 26. Sundberg pled Nolo to count 1 and the second count was dismissed on January 28.
Fifth District Supervisor candidate Ryan Sundberg needs a dictionary. Despite campaign coffers that are flush with developer money, he told the Times-Standard he supports “protecting agricultural and timber lands.”
Perhaps he means “protecting” with new roads and fragmentation.
But his ideas of protection don’t include meeting with farmers who work the land — Sundberg bowed out of a March 29th meeting with them. So, just like other events Sundberg avoided, the meeting carried on without him while his three opponents, Patrick Cleary, Pat Higgins and Jeff Lytle, discussed their views with Humboldt’s northern farmers.
Sundberg originally said he would attend the meeting, but backed out after farmers informed him they support Option A in the General Plan Update (GPU), which offers the most protections to ag land. Sundberg said a death in the family prevented his attendance, but at least he made it to a fundraiser for his campaign the following day.
Sundberg’s big-money supporters throw cash behind the most development-friendly candidates, which is why his comments in the T-S raise eyebrows. It’s not enough to have a campaign manager hovering during interviews to insert protectionist buzzwords Sundberg may or may not embrace. At the April 26th candidates debate, Sundberg said it would be “predecisional” to give an opinion on which GPU option he favored.
Outgoing Supervisor Jill Duffy endorses Sundberg because, she says, he knows how to listen. So far, it appears he listens about as well as Duffy — selectively — avoiding those with opposing positions.
Local reporter turned blogger John Osborn offers another break down of the candidates in current local elections. The data reflects answers given at recent debates hosted by Healthy Humboldt and the League of Women Voters.
Below is an excerpt from the chart of 4th District Supervisor candidates.
And since Ryan Sundberg’s manager allowed him to participate in the McKinleyville debate — unlike other forums — Osborn assembled and additional chart based on 5th District candidates.