Home > Eureka California > Public forum on police chief hiring tonight

Public forum on police chief hiring tonight

If you have an opinion on what kind of police chief should be hired in Eureka, tonight’s your night to tell the City Council.  The first of two forums will be held at 6pm at the Wharfinger.

But if you miss it you’ll have a second chance on September 14th at the Fire Training Classroom, 3030 L St.

The forums will consist of several small tables where citizens can offer input to Council members and staff, who will switch tables after a time to talk listen to another small group.

Citizens should be ready to talk about the major issues facing Eureka, what skills and experience they believe a police chief should have, and what role the chief should play in the community.

The facilitator, Mary Notsurehowtospellherlastname, told the city council Tuesday that if people still have angst over the firing of former chief Garr Nielsen, Council members should hear them out and then redirect conversation to issue at hand.

But Councilman Mike Newman bristled at the very thought of anyone voicing criticism over the shoddy way the city manager and council handled that situation.  He said there won’t be time for such talk.

  1. September 7, 2011 at 10:40 am

    Ask Tad, from the Plazoid, how you get treated when you speak past your allotted time on subjects that the powers that be dislike…

  2. Decline To State
    September 7, 2011 at 11:15 am

    Newman’s comments (say this, not that) pretty much sum up my feelings on how much the Council is willing to listen to the public’s input. They are simply posturing and trying to do a little damage control.

  3. September 7, 2011 at 11:31 am

    Everyone should show their true angst and boycott both meetings. A few picketers with signs might help get the point across.

  4. September 7, 2011 at 11:35 am

    They have a legal requirement to “let you speak”, they have no such requirement to do what the constituents ask for, or demand. They can vote they way THEY personally feel.

    With all of the vote caging and feelings of cheating at the polls and poll intimidation, it is no wander that people that do not belong in power are “elected.”

  5. High Finance
    September 7, 2011 at 11:59 am

    Nonsense. If you have a single iota of proof about cheating at the polls Mark, you should immediately report to the DA’s office. You don’t so you didn’t. The left is just full of sour grapes because your side lost so badly in Eureka.

    I have never, NEVER, seen a single speaker treated with disrespect at any city council meeting. They do have a time limit that is enforced so the meetings don’t drag on for days.

  6. Anonymous
    September 7, 2011 at 12:12 pm

    This is just another way to try to appease those people that they think are pests. Just wasting everyone’s time. I’m sure they already know who is next in line.

  7. Cheers
    September 7, 2011 at 12:31 pm

    Regulars on Heraldo can’t even admit trivial misjudgments, errors and misquotes!

    Our culture requires that individuals be dragged into courtrooms to forcibly extract a little humility and responsibility for their deeds.

    Unless we had an independent (watchdog) media that shared their community’s outrage, or, unless council-members broke the law, Eureka’s usual council majority will remain cavalier over the public money they’ve wasted.

    For them, local elections are mere formalities.

  8. September 7, 2011 at 1:59 pm

    A time limit that is only enforced on speakers that are not “towing” the line.

    It was not me that found the irregularities in the last election, nor was it me that sent me 4 different voter registration cards this last election, even though i was ON the ballot.

    I personally went to the elections office to complain of “vote caging”, i also know that with “mail in ballots” the opportunity is ripe for fixing the election anyway you want it. Not accepting people address, is a form of vote caging and placing armed police near the polls is and always has been seen as voter intimidation. I know that might not frighten a middle aged white conservative, but it bothers the piss out of young, minority voters.

  9. September 7, 2011 at 2:00 pm

    I assume that police brutality in Eureka is also “nonsense”?

  10. Anonymous
    September 7, 2011 at 2:24 pm

    Another Dog and Pony Show presented by the City of Eureka.

  11. anon
    September 7, 2011 at 2:54 pm

    Tyson is the one that should be front and center at the forums. No matter what posturing the council does, it is Tyson who calls the the shots.
    And it comes down to whether or not a new chief will kiss his ass and be a company man, period. Cause Nielsen actually did the things that were asked of him (reduce overtime, improve relations with the community, stop the police shootings, move the dept into this century, etc.) Unfortunately, Tyson’s friends happened to get caught in the net and Davey didn’t like that 1 bit, thus the “differing managing styles” firing.

    So a piece of advice to anyone going to the forum: insist that David be sure to give a new chief the list of “Untouchables,” those on the force the chief should leave alone, and throw in a list of council people and dispatchers he shouldn’t be friends with either, so the guy at least has a fighting chance.

  12. High Finance
    September 7, 2011 at 3:20 pm

    What makes any of you assume that the council is NOT doing what the majority of Eurekans want ?

    The far left that makes up an overwhelming majority posting on Heraldo is not representative of Eureka. Last November’s elections do represent what Eureka wants, at least as of last November.

  13. September 7, 2011 at 3:37 pm

    If you in fact believe the results of the election were fair.
    I for one do not.

  14. Anonymous
    September 7, 2011 at 3:59 pm

    Hi Fi why don’t you and some others tell us exactly that it was about the way Nilson did his job that was unsatisfactory. What was your beef? Bet you don’t have an answer for that.

  15. Anonymous
    September 7, 2011 at 4:15 pm

    I can see it now. Everyone sitting in groups at little tables like grade school. The citizens will be patronized once again. They will be asked for many suggestions and then asked which are most important. This strategy is old and tired. Citizens will have they’re time wasted along with staffs time. This is the same old game they always play to get people off their backs when they screw up. Another way to sidetrack citizens is to put them on committees.

  16. tra
    September 7, 2011 at 4:32 pm


    I don’t know of any evidence that would suggest any significant voting irregularities in the last round of Eureka City Council elections. It seems to me that those who won, won fair and square. The fact is, sometimes voters just make poor choices, including the choice to stay home and not bother to vote. Fortunately there’s always another election just around the bend, so the key is to stay engaged and make your case to the voters that they should give someone else their vote the next time around.

    Carrying on about the “unfairness” of the last election, including making unsubstantiated claims of voting irregularities, well that doesn’t really make for a very effective persuasion strategy.

  17. The Big Picture
    September 7, 2011 at 6:02 pm

    “What makes any of you assume that the council is NOT doing what the majority of Eurekans want” ?

    How many times are you going to repeat that lie?

    Only liars and sophists claim voter turnout represents “the majority of Eurekans” when half the eligible voters aren’t even participating!

    Thus, they must always fear and always fight EVERY issue that could potentially motivate these citizens to register AND vote.

  18. Down the Road
    September 7, 2011 at 8:20 pm

    I was going to stand outside and give out lollipops, so I could
    call anyone going in a sucker. This is a pathetic attempt for
    this council to cover their asses.

    What is more interesting than this, is the new police uniform.
    They did have a pocket on the side leg so the officer could
    have a place for confiscated weapons. They are being replaced
    with a strip down the leg. What a petty bunch run this city.

  19. Anonymous
    September 7, 2011 at 9:05 pm

    So the sensible pocket to hold confiscated weapons for everyone’s safety is being given the deep six because it was instituted by Garr. This is like the Old Dog pissing on a fire hydrant to mark and get his his territory back. Screw police and public safety, it is obviously not important. Regaining control is what is most important to the Old Guard. You can bet they won’t let anyone that was not born here be Chief again. Eureka is so sad. It refuses to change, especially if it is for the betterment of the whole city. You ain’t born here yer outta luck. Don’t apply. The job has been filled, just not announced.

  20. September 7, 2011 at 9:15 pm

    I have zero faith in the election process since the bush/gore fiasco.
    No election is fair.
    All e-voting is subject to hacking.
    Vote caging is hard to prove without massive public records requests.

    I believe that we have not had a free fair election in the last decade.
    My opinion.

  21. High Finance
    September 8, 2011 at 7:44 am

    Big Picture, you are relentless if not thinking. What makes you think all the non voters would side with you ? You have zero evidence or proof to back your claim that the majority of Eurekans oppose the city council.

    To the contrary, the election of just last November proves that you are wrong.

    Non voters are non voters because they don’t care.

    Mark, you simply do not make sense. If somebody else was in control of the elections in California, then it would have to be the Democrats because they are firmly in control of everything in state government.

  22. tra
    September 8, 2011 at 9:16 am


    As you must know, Humboldt County elections do not involve e-voting, we use an optical scan ballot that is retained as a paper trail. And thanks to Humboldt’s Voter Transparency Project we’re light-years ahead of most of the country, in that all the ballots are posted online so that anyone can examine them and catch any potential counting errors/irregularities. So it seems to me that the integrity of our voting system in Humboldt is really quite good.

    Vote “caging” refers to people challenging the validity of voter registrations based on mail sent to their registered address that was returned as “undeliverable.” If that was going on to any significant extent in the recent Eureka elections, we would have been hearing complaints from a large number of people who were turned away from the polls on that basis, but I don’t recall hearing of any such complaints.

    In short, there’s no reason to believe that voting and the vote-counting process in our recent elections — including the most recent Eureka City Council elections — has been corrupted. Promoting a cynical view of the voting process (in the absence of any evidence to back up that cynicism) only encourages the people who believe you to give up and just stay home on election day, lowering voter participation and eroding the basis of majority rule.

    If you spend a lot of effort trying to convince people that their votes are meaningless, don’t be surprised when they choose not to “waste their time” by voting.

  23. Anonymous
    September 8, 2011 at 9:27 am

    Get so tired of the paranoia here. Conspiracies against the public? rare. Multitudes of theories are out there though among those who perceive their bad luck and lack of success to be someone else’s fault, always.

    tra, thanks for your reasonable explanation.

  24. skippy
    September 8, 2011 at 9:29 am

    Excerpts from Thadeus Greenson’s Times-Standard article today, Residents Share Their Visions for New Chief—More Than a Dozen Turn Out:

    “… Eureka City Council members (Marian Brady, Mike Newman, Melinda Ciarabellini and Mayor Frank Jager) spent two hours Wednesday evening listening to a dozen or so residents give voice to what they are looking for in the city’s new police chief. …Citizens said they wanted an educated, ethical leader with experience in community-oriented policing programs to effectively use limited resources and engage the community to tackle the city’s drug, crime and blight issues.

    It helps the council define what the position will look like and what the recruitment process will look like,” said City Manager David Tyson. “It’s important for the community and important for the council.

    …The forum saw residents sit in threes around five small tables, each with a council member or someone from city staff. With general uniformity, the groups named drugs, a lack of police resources, problems associated with homeless populations and blight. Some also mentioned traffic issues, gangs, slum lords and drug and alcohol rehabilitation houses as major problems.

    …The groups said they wanted to see an educated chief who uses limited resources efficiently… with experience in problem- and neighborhood-oriented policing programs — has “ground up” experience, knows all the jobs and responsibilities on the force… (has) strong leadership skills, ethics and humility, articulate and experienced working with diverse groups. Finally, the groups said they want someone who will participate in community events, interact with local organizations and nonprofits and keep a finger on the pulse of the community… a chief who lives in the city and is engaged with the community through regular town hall meetings and neighborhood watch meetings.

    Newman said it’s also important that the city’s future chief wants to be here and is willing to commit to the area for the long haul. ”The family has to like the weather,” he said.

    You’re asking a lot,” replied (facilitator) Gelinas, drawing laughs from the group.

    The council’s next community forum on the hiring of a new police chief will be at 6 p.m. on Sept. 14 at the Fire Training Facility, 3030 L St.

  25. Anonymous
    September 8, 2011 at 9:54 am

    “I believe that we have not had a free fair election in the last decade.”

    Mark Sailors just can’t accept that all three plazoids on the ballot received more votes than he did.

  26. anon
    September 8, 2011 at 11:05 am

    ..”…an educated chief who uses limited resources efficiently.”
    David will translate that as “uses the resources the way I want him to.”

    Seems to me Nielsen fit all of the above, but David, being the stuck-in-high-school control freak manager that he is, didn’t like that a department head was actually smarter than him. Candidates better put that in their resume: I will not outshine the city manager.

  27. The Big Picture
    September 8, 2011 at 11:55 am

    High Finance says:
    September 8, 2011 at 7:44 am

    “….You have zero evidence or proof to back your claim that the majority of Eurekans oppose the city council. To the contrary, the election of just last November proves that you are wrong”.


    For those readers who don’t know what sophistry is, take a good look at this quote, it’s Hi-Liar’s M.O.

    The language appears reasonable but is designed to deceive.

    Once again, my comment exposed Hi-Liar’s repeated lie that “the majority of Eurekans” is the same as the majority of voters. I made no comment about how unregistered and non-participating voters might vote.

    Hi-Liar is a mere provocateur, manipulator and statu-quo apologist extraordinaire.

    For the last generation that I’ve looked, the U.S. Census reports that about half the eligible voters register to vote in the U.S.

    That there’s no outcry, no media focus, and no effort at public schools and universities to address this fact, is just fine with the status-quo and the republican party that tends to loose every issue when there’s a historic voter turnout.

  28. High Finance
    September 8, 2011 at 2:26 pm

    The point stands, Mr Big. You have no proof or evidence of any kind that suggests your claim.

    Non voters don’t vote because they don’t care enough to do so. It suggests that they are OK with the status quo or at least not upset with it.

    It blows your ridiculous assertion that most of Eureka is very upset with the city council.

  29. Fact Checker
    September 8, 2011 at 3:34 pm

    High Finance says:
    September 8, 2011 at 2:26 pm

    “Non voters don’t vote because they don’t care enough to do so. It suggests that they are OK with the status quo or at least not upset with it.”

    Is that a fact High Ball?

    “…The survey also reveals broad differences between those who are not registered to vote and regular or occasional voters. Non-voters are politically estranged: They are the least interested in local politics of the four groups and the most likely to say voting doesn’t change things. They also are five times more likely to say they’re too busy to vote than are regular voters (43% versus 8%).

    Americans who are not registered to vote also are more socially isolated from other people: They’re less likely to know people in their neighborhood. They also are more likely to be relatively recent arrivals in their current neighborhoods ­ more than one-in-five (23%) say they have lived in their neighborhood less than a year. People who are not registered to vote also are generally mistrustful of others; just 27% say that most people can be trusted.

    Structural factors stand between some of these Americans and the ballot booth. Three-in-ten adults who are not registered to vote say it is difficult for them to get to the polls; this compares with 19% among those who vote rarely, and just 8% each among intermittent and regular voters.”

  30. The Big Picture
    September 8, 2011 at 5:34 pm

    My point stands Mr. Hi-Liar.

    You habitually refer to “the majority of Eureka” when you’re actually referring to the majority of its voters.

    I’ve called you out on this before, but your deceit persists.

    I provided you my source and, as usual, you just made-up crap.

    Most non-participants I’ve interviewed merely believe they have no impact and that elections are rigged, which concurs with Fact Checker’s reference.

  31. Down the Road
    September 8, 2011 at 7:15 pm

    All of it is just a feel good moment. They have no intention of
    cleaning this city up. Tyson has made no effort to enforce the
    civil ordinances in this city. How can anyone expect a new
    police chief to come in and make headway if he has no back-up
    from 531 K. All this newly elected council and Tyson want is
    someone to kiss their lily white asses. If public wants to believe
    all this jabberwocky (nonsensical speech or writing) then there is
    really very little the rest of us can do.

  32. SmokeMonster
    September 8, 2011 at 10:43 pm

    So Mark,DTR,Skippy,Decline2state,JoeNlow,TheBigPic,factchecker,I take it you made it there to explain your frustrations?

  33. SmokeMonster
    September 8, 2011 at 10:52 pm

    I’m 100% positive anon 254,1105 along with anonymous’ 1212,224,359,415,905 and cheers were all there.

    I would even bet high finances high finances on it.

  34. September 9, 2011 at 8:00 am

    I live and work in Arcata. I personally LOVE our PD, and think Police Chief Chapman is doing a STUPENDOUS job.
    Now if i lived or worked in Eureka, you can bet your sweet bippy i would have been there.

  35. September 9, 2011 at 8:06 am

    On voting, we should have mandatory participation, like they have in Australia. They have upwards of 98% participation.


  36. SmokeMonster
    September 9, 2011 at 8:09 am

    Sure you would mark,im sure you would

  37. September 9, 2011 at 8:09 am

    ““I believe that we have not had a free fair election in the last decade.”

    Mark Sailors just can’t accept that all three plazoids on the ballot received more votes than he did.”

    I accept that fact. I ran my campaign on under $150.00.
    That will not be the case next time.
    The “plaziods” as you call them each had a few well thought out points, contrary to some of the “point” made on this blog…

    Ask Al Gore about the “fairness” of the american election process.

  38. September 9, 2011 at 8:14 am

    “Vote “caging” refers to people challenging the validity of voter registrations based on mail sent to their registered address that was returned as “undeliverable.” If that was going on to any significant extent in the recent Eureka elections, we would have been hearing complaints from a large number of people who were turned away from the polls on that basis, but I don’t recall hearing of any such complaints.”

    My registration was returned 4 times.
    I had to go to the voter registration office in Eureka to straighten it out.
    I know of at least 4 people that this happened to.
    The Registrar, discounted hundred of registrations based on “address irregularities”, just like what happened in Medocino with measure G.

    They do not turn you away at the polls, they force you to fill out a provisional ballot, and as we all know that is virtually useless as 90% are discounted.

    Most that vote “provisionally” never check to find out if their vote counted.

  39. September 9, 2011 at 8:21 am

    The elections are controlled by the two CONSERVATIVE corporations that produce at least 80% of voting machines. Diebold Voting Systems and ES&S.

    “The voting technology business is dominated by Republican-leaning U.S. and foreign corporations. Today, two Republican-controlled corporations, Election Systems and Software ( ES&S) and Diebold Voting Systems, and a British-based company, Sequoia, control about 80% of the vote count in the U.S.. But many other corporations are also involved in the elections industry (see below). Meanwhile, the long history of election upsets due to voting machine “glitches”, that overwhelmingly favor Republican candidates, continues to grow. See:http://www.ecotalk.org/VotingMachineErrors.htm

    Will future elections feature The Battle of the Backdoors to voting software? Military defense contractors that also provide election services include: Accenture (a business partner of Halliburton, also a defense contractor), Diebold Voting Systems, Northrop Grumman/Diversified Dynamics/TRW (partners with Science Applications International Corporation, SAIC, also in defense industry), General Dynamics/Computing Devices Canada, Unisys (partners with ES&S), National Semiconductor Corporation, Hart Intercivic, Booz-Allen & Hamilton, and Perot Systems Government Services, Inc.

    Government Oversight: There is no federal agency that has regulatory authority over the elections industry according to Brian Hancock, spokesperson for the Federal Election Commission (FEC), and Jorge Martinez, spokesperson for the Department of Justice (DOJ). No agency or organization even has a complete list of voting machine companies. Using a rough estimate, there are about 70 voting machine companies worldwide, with at least 48 based in the U.S.. The FEC lists only 19, the Texas-based National Association of State Election Directors (NASED) lists 16 that are ‘industry certified’ (which are outmoded and voluntary guidelines), while the IFES Buyers Guide lists about 64 companies worldwide that appear to be engaged in electronic voting. Meanwhile there is one company that is ‘flying under the radar’ of both the FEC and NASED, that is the Bermuda-based Accenture (formally Andersen Consulting) that has the contract for the online military vote in 2004.

    Ownership: There are no government standards or restrictions on who can sell and service voting machines and systems. Foreigners, convicted criminals, office holders, political candidates, and news media organizations can and do own these companies. It appears that these companies are dominated by members of the Republican Party and foreign investors. Jack Kemp, a former GOP candidate for vice president in 1996 and a possible candidate for Governor of California this year, is on the board of directors for Election.com, while Senator Chuck Hagel (R-NE) was the past president of the company (AIS) that counted the votes in his first election and an investor in the company (ES&S) that counted the votes in his second election. At least four companies are foreign-owned: Sequoia (UK), Accenture/Election.com (UK Bermuda), EVS (Japan), and N.V. Nederlandsche Apparatenfabriek (Netherlands). Election.com was formerly owned by Osan, Ltd., a Saudi Arabian firm. Many voting machine companies appear to share managers, investors, and equipment which raises questions of conflict-of-interest and monopolistic practices.

  40. September 9, 2011 at 8:26 am

    “SmokeMonster says:
    September 9, 2011 at 8:09 am

    Sure you would mark,im sure you would”

    Why the sarcasm, I attend most civic meetings that affect me or my family, or at least communicate with my representative if i can not attend.

  41. September 9, 2011 at 8:48 am

    I just wish that both Arcata and Eureka had ELECTED mayors to head up the executive branch of local government.
    I blows me away that a non-elected “manager” is in control of an entire branch of local government, including the police.

  42. The Monitor
    September 9, 2011 at 9:40 am

    H F is once again spewing the party line. The current city council and manager are not in tune with many Eurekans. We may not currently be the majority, but if they continue on their present path, they many be quite surprised in the next election.

  43. Anonymous
    September 9, 2011 at 9:40 am

    If hifi is right and most Eurekans support this embarrassment of a city council, then all hope it lost for Eureka, and time for a mass exodus of citizens and business.

  44. High Finance
    September 9, 2011 at 9:55 am

    The Monitor’s statement at 9.40am has so many “maybes” and “may nots” and “buts” that his post is essentially meaningless.

    Anony at 9.40am is welcomed to move to Arcata where perhaps he would be more comfortable ?

    Mark Sailors paranoia has reached new heights. You do know that there is medicines that can help you ?

  45. tra
    September 9, 2011 at 10:19 am

    Mark Sailors said: “The elections are controlled by the two CONSERVATIVE corporations that produce at least 80% of voting machines. Diebold Voting Systems and ES&S.”

    Not our elections in Humboldt.

    We use optical-scan machines, which means that the voter physically fills out the ballot, which is then available as a paper trail.

    First the ballots are counted with the optical-scan machine, then after the machine count there is a hand-count audit of x% of the votes, and if there is a discrepancy between the audit results and the machine count, a full hand recount is triggered. Then, thanks to the Humboldt Transparency Project, all the ballots are scanned and posted on-line so that anyone can count them by hand and check their own numbers against the machine count.

    The one time when there was a software glitch (the final numbers failed to include one precinct) ithe problem was quickly uncovered and resolved thanks the ballots being posted online.

    It seems to me that here in Humboldt County we have a remarkably fair and reliable system for ensuring an accurate and complete count of the votes.

  46. Fact Checker
    September 9, 2011 at 10:51 am

    High Blowhard says:
    September 9, 2011 at 9:55 am

    “The Monitor’s statement at 9.40am has so many “maybes” and “may nots” and “buts” that his post is essentially meaningless.

    Mark Sailors paranoia has reached new heights. You do know that there is medicines that can help you ?”

    No facts, just insults? That all you got High Ball ol’ boy?

  47. tra
    September 9, 2011 at 10:57 am

    My understanding is that there are really two different types of “vote caging.”

    (1) Vote caging performed by private groups: They send mail to registered voters and any that come back as undelivered are then noted, and this fact is used to challenge the validity of voters at the polls (and to challenge the validity of mail-in votes). By targeting only registered voters of one party, or only areas where one party or certain candidates have a lot of support, these private “vote-cagers” can try to skew their supression of the vote to benefit a paricular party and/or particular candidate(s). I am not aware of any history of this kind of systematic vote-caging in Humboldt, but it’s certainly possible and we do need to remaim vigilant against it.

    (2) Vote caging by voting authorities. This would be essentially the same sort of thing, but performed directly by a partisan-minded elections officials. But you have to keep in mind that it is a legitimate and important part of the Registrar of Voter’s job to periodically “canvass” the voting list — in order to keep the list “up to date” so that it’s not full of dead people and people who have moved out of county, and so that people who have moved within the county are registered at the correct address. As long as the procedures are sound, and there is no effort to target people of one specific party or people in one particular geographical area or people who support a particular candidate, then the periodic canvassing and updating of the voter registration list shouldn’t really be a problem.

    I agree that there’s a problem when you receive four different pieces of mail about your registration and then on top of that it sounds like they still didn’t get it right until you went down to the elections department. I don’t know what the problem is, I haven’t had that problem myself. But I don’t think there’s any reason to believe that our Registrar of Voters or her staff are engaged in some scheme to disenfranchise voters in general, much less to try to do so in such a manner as to skew the vote toward a specific party and/or candidate(s). Seems more likely that it was just some glitch where they double-listed and/ or double-mailed to you. A certain amount of human error and computer error is going to be inherent in any canvassing of the list of registered voters — which is not to say that such errors are harmless or that they shouldn’t always be aiming to tighten up the system so that they make less mistakes in the process.

    Once or twice in the last few years I have received something from the elections department and mailed it back in, confirming I was still at that address, confirming my choice of party (“decline to state”) etc. I am registered to receive a mail-in ballot, but unless I’m going to be out-of-town on Election Day, I usually go ahead and turn in my mail-in ballot at the polling place anyway. When I go to the polling place, they check their list for my name (there’s never been any problem finding it) and I turn over my mail-in ballot right there. A few times I have changed my mind about a candidate or ballot initiative at the last minute (but my mail-in ballot was already filled out) and in that case I have been able to “surrender” the mail-in ballot at the polling place (marking the mail-in ballot as “spoiled”), been given a regular polling-place ballot, filled it out and they scanned it in like everyone else’s.

  48. tra
    September 9, 2011 at 10:59 am

    I have never been asked to fill out a “provisional” ballot, but my understanding is that, at least in past years, the policy was that those provisional votes are authenticated and then the eligible ones counted only when one of the races is close enough that it’s possible that the provisionals could affect the outcome.

    If that’s still true, I do disagree with that policy — in my opinion all of them should be confirmed in terms of checking on the voter’s eligibility and all of those that are eligible should then be counted — no matter whether that’s going to affect the outcome of the election or not. That’s only fair to the voter, who has made the effort to go and vote, and it’s only fair to the candidates and to the public at large, who deserve to know exactly how many votes each candidate actually got.

  49. September 9, 2011 at 1:14 pm

    So now it’s i paranoid to question the validity of the election process?
    Come now.

  50. September 9, 2011 at 1:15 pm

    If i was paranoid, I would post under an assumed name…

  51. tra
    September 9, 2011 at 1:53 pm

    Well, Mark, I guess you’re responding to High Finance, because he referred to you as “paranoid.”

    For my part, I don’t think it’s paranoid to “question the validity of the election process,” but I think that, at least as far as our local elections are concerned, it is certainly inaccurate to go ahead and declare that they have been corrupted.

    And that’s what you did, Mark, you didn’t just “question” the validity of elections, you straight-out claimed that:

    No election is fair…I believe that we have not had a free fair election in the last decade.


    The elections are controlled by the two CONSERVATIVE corporations that produce at least 80% of voting machines. Diebold Voting Systems and ES&S.

    And, sure, I have certainly read about “voter caging” and other voter-supression problems, no-paper-trail voting machines and so on, in other counties and other states, but remember, you started this discussion by dismissing the results of an election in Eureka.

    So far I don’t think you’ve given much reason to believe that the outcome of the Eurekas elections were the result of anything other than a free and fair voting process.

  52. The Big Picture
    September 9, 2011 at 2:00 pm

    Choice Point was handling the elections in the U.S. during the Bush coup, then it went to Mexico, but it’s same shenanigans nearly sent Mexico into another revolution with numerous irregularities.

    Know anything about that Mark?

    From his trademark silence, expect the Hi-liar to continue referring to Eureka’s voters, as “Eureka’s majority of citizens”.

  53. September 9, 2011 at 5:28 pm

    I believe that there is widespread vote caging, I believe that the homeless have been intimidated into not voting. Placing the police near voting limits minority voting.

  54. September 9, 2011 at 5:30 pm

    Free and fair = he who spends the most gets elected.

  55. tra
    September 9, 2011 at 5:49 pm


    Just to be clear: When you say “I believe there is widepread vote caging” are you referring to something you think is actually taking place here in Humboldt County?

    If so, who is it that you believe is doing this vote caging? The County Registrar of Voters, or private parties, or both?

  56. SmokeMonster
    September 9, 2011 at 7:01 pm

    Its amusing none of the people bitching either don’t A. live in Eureka or B.Don’t even make it to the meetings

  57. Anonymous
    September 10, 2011 at 11:03 am

    Why should more than 12 people show up?

    If Tyson gets mad again, he’ll just fire them.

  58. SmokeMonster
    September 10, 2011 at 5:30 pm

    Yes anonymous 1103, that’s exactly how they want the general population to behave,by saying why show up,instead lets sit behind our computers and post like that.

  59. tra
    September 10, 2011 at 5:44 pm

    Regarding Eureka Police-related matters, former officer Kalis just pleaded guilty to possession of heroin, vandalism, and unlawful disclosure of DMV records. The Judge delivered a halfhearted slap-on-the-wrist sentence of 200 hours of community service and 3 years of probation, after which the felony conviction will be removed from his record.

    As part of the plea deal, the prosecutor dropped the additional charges of false imprisonment, unlawful communication with a prisoner, petty theft, the unauthorized access of a computer network and possessing marijuana and other controlled substances without a prescription.

    The light sentence is especially galling in light of the fact that several of his crimes involved abusing his authority as a cop to harass and terrorize his ex-wife. According to the Times-Standard, the justification the judge gave for this leniency was that Kalis has already “suffered and fallen from grace.”

    So if you’re a cop, and you have successfully fooled a lot of people into thinking that you’re a great guy and a pillar of the community, then when it turns out you’ve been abusing your authority and breaking the law left and right, the fact that you can no longer fool all these people and you no longer have that authority to abuse, that means you’ve already “suffered” enough, there’s really no need to punish you much beyond that.

    So the message from the DA and the Judge to any rogue cops out there seems to be “carry on — and don’t worry, if you get caught, we’ll keep you safely out of jail.”

  60. tra
    September 10, 2011 at 5:49 pm

    Oh, and here’s the link to the Times-Standard story which inspired that little rant:


  61. September 10, 2011 at 6:18 pm

    Did anyone expect him to get more than a slap on the wrist?

  62. September 10, 2011 at 6:20 pm

    I think that there is a clear conservative bias at the election office. I think that they use the power they have to steer the boat to the right.

    That’s all I am going to say about it.

  63. tra
    September 10, 2011 at 7:27 pm


    Well you’re entitled to your opinion, of course. But nothing you’ve posted here actually provides any kind of factual basis for your claim that “there is a clear conservative bias in the election office” or that “they use the power they have to steer the boat to the right.”

  64. September 10, 2011 at 7:38 pm

    Even a perfect Chief could be fired “without cause.”

  65. September 10, 2011 at 8:18 pm

    I am pretty sure this was all just my opinion on the state of elections, here, and nation wide.

    I still maintain that both Etown and Atown need elected mayors and not hired city managers.

  66. tra
    September 10, 2011 at 8:42 pm

    Well I’m with you on the mayor question, Mark. Over the years, I’ve lived in cities with the more straightforward “strong Mayor” system and I’ve also lived in cities with the “weak ceremonial mayor with city-council-selected City Manager” system, and in my opinion the “strong Mayor” system is, on balance, preferable. That’s because (1) the “strong Mayor” system provides a more direct line of accountability between the top executive authority of the city and the city’s voters, and (2) if the “strong” Mayor is also a good Mayor, they seem to be able to get a lot more done, and more quickly, as opposed to the cumbersome management-by-committee that city-council-dominated systems can sometimes suffer from.

    Ironically, the “City Manager” system was itself an attempt to deal with corruption problems that occured with “strong Mayors” who sometimes used their strength to enrich their cronies, reward their political allies and punish their political opponents. Unfortunately all those same problems can still occur in a situation where city council members and/or their selected City Manager dole out the enrichment, punishments and rewards in a similar manner. In other words city councils can be just as corrupt or power-abusing as a mayor, it’s just that the corruption and abuse of power has to be a little bit more decentralized and coordinated in an oligopolistic manner, rather than a monopolistic manner.

  67. September 10, 2011 at 9:06 pm

    Agree 100%
    At least we could recall a mayor.

  68. September 10, 2011 at 9:33 pm

    Couldn’t a “strong mayor” still make cloistered decisions just as a City Manager does in a “weak mayor” system? We need to change the city charter to make the hiring and firing of top officials more transparent.

  69. Down the Road
    September 11, 2011 at 4:05 pm

    Read Eureka Codes (’63 Code 2-5.118 and .119. The right tools
    are in place for terminating an employee. The city manager and
    the rest don’t follow their own rules. They lie, they cheat and the
    public lets them.

  70. Anonymous
    September 11, 2011 at 5:02 pm

    You keep making the same claims over and over again that the City has violated the law; in fact you said a month or so ago that you were exploring your options with an attorney.

    Apparently that attorney has advised you that your only recourse is to misrepresent facts and cry foul. Get a clue sue.

  71. Anonymous
    September 11, 2011 at 9:15 pm

    Anonymous 5:02 Your so full of shit you stink.

  72. High Finance
    September 12, 2011 at 12:30 pm

    Good idea Joel ! Why we could even have all city employess hired by an election of the voters.

    Even the file clerks, secretaries and the janitors shouldn’t have to kowtow to their bosses. Let them run for election every four years.

    What could be more transparent than that ?

  73. SmokeMonster
    September 12, 2011 at 11:36 pm

    Are you going to doodle some drawrings to shed light on the situation?

    Or continue making fun of local sub-cultures,except noticeably your own,the non-local that’s from somewhere better than here and are here to save the locals that are not smart enough to defend themselves or quick enough to notice your continual jabs at them in the NCJ.

    This could be your ticket out of here,what a great year for Humboldt rags and readers,to be rid of driscol,Sims and Joel the troll in one year.

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