The Hoopa Valley Tribe has made every effort to work with Ray’s Food Place and C & K Markets, Inc. in order to ensure that Ray’s Food Place in Hoopa is a safe place for community members to shop. The rodent infestation inside the store, which appears to have developed over an extended period of time, is reprehensible and unacceptable. Ray’s should be ashamed of themselves for expecting tribal and community members to purchase products contaminated with rat feces, oils, and urine.
The Tribe has therefore determined that the severance of our business relationship with Ray’s and C & K is in the best interests of the community due to health and safety concerns. The Hoopa Valley Tribal Council Members want to assure the membership and the community that they are working diligently to develop both short-term and long-term solutions that ensure access to safe and healthy food. The Hoopa Valley Tribe will make every effort to publicize any and all temporary services we provide on an ongoing basis, including grocery distributions and free transportation to stores in the Eureka/Arcata area, which will assist them with their household shopping needs.
The Tribe will continue to use all communication avenues at its disposal to provide updates to the membership and the community regarding our efforts.
Our last communication from the Hoopa Valley Tribe was Friday, June 17. This is not an unusual situation, as the Tribe has often been unresponsive to us. For the past nine years, we’ve expressed our interest in negotiating a long-term lease, so we could make improvements in the store. The Tribe did not respond to our inquiries, so we’ve operated on a month-to-month basis.
Last week, we voluntarily closed Ray’s Food Place in Hoopa due to rodent issues that were not acceptable to us. We also took the initiative to hire contractors to seal the exterior of the store to prevent further rodent entry. Over this past weekend, our contractors removed refrigeration systems and started other in-store eradication efforts. Planning and completing this work required that the store be closed to the public. Earlier, we indicated that we would reopen the store as soon as we had a long-term lease with the Tribe.
Despite numerous attempts to communicate with the Tribe, C&K management has not heard from them for almost a week. Smooth store operations require a good working relationship with the landlord; we do not have that partnership with the Tribe. Given the Tribe’s lack of interest in talking with us about retaining us as tenants, we are giving notice that we will vacate the store on August 31, 2016. The store will not reopen.
We will offer Hoopa store employees positions at other stores, but we know that may not be an option for all of them. We also realize that our store is a very convenient place for people to shop, and closing will mean that many will have to travel to obtain food. Yet, we cannot operate a store when the building owner ignores us and does not respond to us. We extend our appreciation to our employees and customers for their support over the years.
Humboldt County Civil Grand Jury
John Heckel, Foreperson
Press Release: 6-17-2016
For Immediate Release
The Humboldt County Behavioral Health Board
The 2015-2016 Humboldt County Civil Grand Jury (HCCGJ) received several complaints regarding the Mental Health Branch of the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS). Those complaints conveyed dysfunctional work guidelines, distrustful working relationships, unresponsive upper management, mass resignations, and an unsupportive work environment. The complaints reflected the concerns of a broad base of community mental health advocates and Mental Health Branch staff. The number of complaints and the wide spectrum of those filing complaints instigated this HCCGJ investigation.
While many Humboldt County department heads and elected officials could have been more proactive in identifying problems within the Mental Health Branch of DHHS, this role is specifically assigned to the Humboldt County Behavioral Health Board by the Bronzan-McCorquodale Act of 1991. The HCCGJ finds that the BHB failed to exercise this important role.
A review of the BHB actions revealed few recommendations, fewer comments on policies, little advice to governing bodies, and seldom reviewed or evaluated community mental health needs. The Minutes from the board’s meetings reveal the BHB’s time was primarily spent listening to reports from the DHHS and Mental Health Branch employees. The Humboldt County Civil Grand Jury could find no evidence that mandated annual reports had been filed for several years with the Board of Supervisors.
The Humboldt County Civil Grand Jury recommends that the BHB submit its past due annual reports to the BOS and thereafter submit, in a timely manner, its required written annual report. The Humboldt County Civil Grand Jury recommends that the Humboldt County Behavioral Health Board undergo training to fully understand its duties and roles, and to proceed proactively to carry out the legal requirements of the Bronzan-McCorquodale Act.
With any coverage of this Grand Jury report please include: Access to the entire Grand Jury report may be obtained by going to www.humboldtgov.org/510/Grand-Jury
On May 15, 2016 at about 1:00 PM the Sheriff's Office was notified by a person canoeing on the Eel River of possible human remains found on the Shively side of the Eel River near Stafford. Deputies responded to the location and were able to confirm that the remains were of human origin.
A Sheriff's Detective and Deputy Coroner responded to the scene. The remains are described as mostly skeletal. Due to the extreme decomposition of the body, it is unknown if the remains are male or female at this time. Further examination by a pathologist or anthropologist may be needed before we have any further information to release.
Anyone with further information regarding this case is encouraged to contact the Sheriff's Office.
SACRAMENTO – Today Governor Jerry Brown signed SB2X-7 raising the minimum age to purchase tobacco to 21 for the nearly 40 million people living in California.
Assemblyman Wood said, “Getting to this point feels like reaching the finish line of a long quest in California, but it is just the beginning for the country. We have kicked this door down for our colleagues in other states to follow. The wave in Hawaii has turned into a tsunami in California, and I think it won’t be long before we see it roll all the way to Washington D.C. As the largest state in the country California’s courage on this issue should lead the way for other states to step up to the challenge. The Governor and my colleagues deserve tremendous credit for displaying the courage it took to do the right thing.”
Senate Bill (SB) 2X-7 is part of the Second Extraordinary Session called by the Governor in June 2015 and represents a merger of Assemblyman Jim Wood’s (D-Healdsburg) Assembly Bill (AB) 2X-8 and Senator Ed Hernández’s (D-West Covina) SB2X-7. Assemblyman Wood is the principle co-author of the bill.
Assemblymember Wood served as Mayor when the City of Healdsburg became the first city in the state to pass a ban on the sale of tobacco products to anyone under 21 years old.
“It is incredible to see something I worked on in a small town in northern California turn into such a huge public health victory and something that will benefit the whole state. Finally, after decades of stagnation, we have passed the most significant tobacco reform legislation in 50 years in California. This policy will prevent countless young people from becoming addicted to a substance that has claimed the lives of millions of their ancestors,” said Assemblyman Wood.
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