The Department of Veterans' Affairs announced yesterday that it will ban the flying of Confederate flags in national cemeteries. The announcement comes exactly two months after House Republicans voted to remove legislation sponsored by Representative Jared Huffman that would accomplish similar a similar end from a VA appropriations bill.
The new policy set forth by the VA will not restrict the placement of Confederate flags on individual graves, but it will prohibit the controversial symbol from being flown on flagpoles above cemeteries. Rep. Keith Ellison, who joined Huffman in urging the VA to amend their policy, referred to the Confederate flag as a "symbol of treason" as well as racism.
The suit the Humboldt-Mendocino Marijuana Advocacy Project brought against the county of Humboldt following its January adoption of a commercial medical marijuana ordinance was settled on July 5, but HuMMAP says there’s still much work left to be done.
The suit, filed in February, was an attempt to “block the environmental damage” it saw as an inevitability following the passage of the ordinance. Among HuMMAP’s chief concerns was the lack of an environmental impact report. As a condition of the settlement, the county has agreed not to modify or accept permit applications past the Dec. 31 deadline until an EIR is prepared. Additional language will be added to the ordinance to address noise from generators, the purchase of carbon credits and the role of Cal Fire. Cal Fire, in the words of HuMMAP’s press release, has such “strong objections … that they did not wish to be substantially involved in the permitting process.” (Cal Fire's public information officer did return calls or emails from the Journal; we will update if contacted.)
In its press release, HUMMAP calls out “environmental groups,” saying “as a trade group we saw it was necessary to make up for unacceptable lapses by environmentalists.” The Environmental Protection Information Center declined to comment on this issue.
The LA Times just released an interesting report on Bernie Sanders campaign donations, offering a look at the regions that have supported his successful grassroots funding campaign.
The data, which was compiled into an interactive map you can explore by visiting their story here, lets you look at donations by ZIP Code, and contains some pretty interesting details about which parts of Humboldt County are feeling the Bern. (Before we are accused of singling out Sanders, let us explain that the candidate's small-donation data was available because of a fundraising tool his campaign uses — more on that below. Because donors of under $200 are not required to be disclosed, similar surveys of other campaign donors were not possible, the Times reports.)
North Coast Congressman Jared Huffman blasted presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump’s planned visit with the leaders of the Westlands Water District in an absolutely scathing press release sent out this afternoon.
“Donald Trump, who continues to refuse to release his tax returns and show the public his personal accounting, will be sitting down with the perpetrators responsible for one of the largest municipal bond fraud cases in SEC history,” Huffman wrote. He accuses Trump and the district of using “smoke and mirrors” to manage their “questionable” financial histories.
Gavin Newsom visits with pot growers and local lawmakers in Garberville.
Lt. Governor Gavin Newsom (who visited Humboldt County pot farms last year) is launching the campaign for legal recreational marijuana today with support for an initiative that gathered enough votes to be on the November ballot.
The initiative, which will need voter approval of more than 50 percent, has long been considered the most realistic of several proposed and rumored initiatives to pass, given its financial support from bigwigs like ex-Facebook President Sean Parker and political support from many in the establishment.
Politicians are just like us. Who hasn’t been given $460 tickets to a Warriors or Giants game from a powerful state union or private corporation?
The LA Times just released an article detailing the sports-related gifts handed to California lawmakers and there was our very own 2nd District Assemblyman Jim Wood, leading the state in single gift value.
Humboldt County voters: Here’s your chance to take part in the arcane and confusing tradition of presidential delegate selection. Hold on to your butts.
On May 1, the Democratic Party will choose eight delegates each from the Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders camps to potentially represent California’s 2nd Congressional District voters at the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia in July.
Editor's Note: The following is an opinion piece by Petrolia playwright David Simpson, who co-founded the Mattole Salmon Group and currently sits on its board of directors. A climate change activist, Simpson is attending the 21st United Nations Conference of the Parties in Paris and will be sharing his thoughts with the Journal periodically.
At the outset of the hugely ballyhooed United Nations climate summit in Paris this past week, there seemed to be good reason for climate activists to sense impending disappointment. There had already been years of inaction in the history of these massive annual efforts ostensibly aimed at reducing the effects of climate change on society. Back in 2009, COP 15 in Copenhagen had been widely billed as ‘Hopenhagen” before it quickly become almost synonymous with the failure of hope — one of the great disappointments in the annals of environmentalism and, in some respect, the history of humankind. America, among other nations, had dirty hands from its role there. (COP is UN-talk for “Conference of the Parties,” the “parties” being the nations involved.)
Congressman Jared Huffman is not having the fish. According to a press release, Huffman is "deeply concerned" about the Food and Drug Administration's approval of genetically engineered salmon. He cites the engineered salmon's potential to damage wild salmon populations, ecosystems and the fishing industry, as well as the lack of labeling requirements for producers. The congressman is co-sponsoring legislation to ban GE fish.
North Coast Congressman Jared Huffman announced this morning that he "feels the Bern," but is endorsing Hillary Clinton in her bid to become the country's next president because he feels she has a better chance to beat the "terrible GOP candidates" and trigger a Democratic wave that wins back both the House and the Senate.