Tag Archives: Larry Wahl Butte County Dist 2

Butte County supervisors need their heads examined

6 Jul

This morning my husband and I went out early to do chores, expecting the digits to triple by noon or one pm. It’s nice to be able to look behind yourself at a day well spent by 2 pm, and find a shady spot to take a nap or a baby pool to soak your toes until the mercury settles back down a little.

It’s smart to do your shopping early these days. Just that trot from the front door of the grocery store to your car can take the crisp out of a head of lettuce and chop a day or two off the life expectancy of that carton of milk.

Unfortunately it’s not just the heat that makes going out around Chico unpleasant. Transients have set upon our town like some kind of locust plague. You’d think they’d head for the coast, or at least some river town, where the temperatures would be cooler. The temperatures here have proven deadly –



I can only imagine what misery would drive this woman to lay down and die in a cluster of bushes along Hwy 99, trucks rumbling just yards from her body, but I do realize, she had nobody outside her immediate family to turn to.  A $63 million budget for the county Behavioral Health Department and we still don’t have any sort of crisis center or crisis team to deal with people who are in trouble. As we all found out from the Desmond Phillips disaster, calls for help are too often answered by Chico PD officers who may or may not have had one week of training at Butte College in determining, as former police officer Linda Dye put it, “who’s crazy and who’s just faking it…”

Today that was the answer for a young man I feel was determined to take his own life to get help.

As my husband and I rounded the corner out of the deli section of the Mangrove Safeway, my husband stopped to look at  the lunch meat. As I stood by the fancy cheese counter, this 20-something year old man, clean and shaven, with clean clothes, came walking toward us with a very determined look on his face. His expression was almost hostile. He walked straight into the liquor section and I turned my back. Suddenly a young employee brushed by me, smiling in apology. She ran toward into the liquor section saying, “wait, you can’t do that…Sir!”

As I turned, I saw the young man was trying to rip the security top off a liquor bottle. The employee rushed up to him, and around the corner came the manager, who also smiled at me. They know us, we come around the store every couple of days, we walk the same route, buy almost exactly the same items every time.

We saw the young man was argumentative, and there were other employees coming fast on the scene. As we hustled toward check-out, we watched the manager following the young man, who was more agitated, as he walked toward the front of the store. I was glad to have Rafiki and Pete at my check-out, but I worry about my friends at Safeway, having to deal with these people, more and more constantly.

The young man went out the front door, the manager watching at a distance. As we exited the store, we saw Chico’s finest putting the guy in cuffs and leading him toward their car.

We’ve seen similar people at the Safeway plaza – young, clean, new casual clothes, just loitering around the front of Safeway. Once we saw a young guy who seemed to be passed out on the sidewalk outside Kwando, with several empty wine bottles laying nearby.  As we came into Safeway, we watched him ambling up the sidewalk toward the store entrance.

I have to wonder – are these people who have been discharged by the Butte County Psychiatric Facility in Oroville? I have heard they are offered a ride to the Torres Shelter or other facilities, and then just left to their own resources. Many of them have been given prescription drugs, on their own recognizance, which seems, well, crazy to me.

It’s institutionalized insanity. These people are brought here from other cities and counties because we have, as BCBH director Adrian Kittrell describes them, “beds”. Each person come with a sort of dowery – $550 a day. The county is allowed to hold them with or without their consent for a total of 45 days. You do the math, this kind of transparent corruption makes me sick.

But do they treat them?  Well, go out and about around Chico, and tell me what you think. The streets are horrible even for the transients.  I think they seek out incarceration because  it’s meals and a place to get clean and maybe a little safer than sleeping along Hwy 99 or Bidwell Park. At least it’s air conditioned, and you can sit around and smoke cigarettes and not do anything productive.

Including treatment. I’m sure they are interviewed, just enough to glean the personal information required for funding the center. But therapy? I wouldn’t bet on that.

And after 45 days, they are released, by law the county can’t hold them any longer. Unless they make a bee-line for the nearest retail center and boost a bottle of booze, or display any behavior that shows they are a “threat to themselves or others”.

It’s a merry-go-round of insanity, starting with Butte County Supervisors. They all need their heads examined. Garry Cooper pointed out in this morning’s Enterprise Record, it’s all about the pensions and benefits.


Public employee unions take advantage of citizens

Here we go again. “Supervisors cut 69 positions” — mentally ill thrown to wolves, fire and public protection saved from cuts, thanks to their generous campaign contributions and vote-getting public endorsements.

“Pension liabilities looming” — both the city of Chico and county supervisors report, after these leaders put the taxpayers’ concerns at the bottom of the totem pole in exchange for public union bribes.

Next comes — “Half cent sales tax increase needed to enhance public safety,” when it is, in reality, needed to pay the over $100,000 per year retirements for these public union members which begins at age 55, 10 years younger than the taxpayers and five times their Social Security retirement.

How about new headlines, like “Supervisors approve term limits for themselves and abolish their CalPERS pension costs paid by taxpayers for their part time jobs” or “Chico leaders hire law firm to set aside public union contracts negotiated under conflict of interest with unions due to campaign contributions” or “Governor and Legislature require all public union retirees work until average age of taxpayers before receiving pensions” or “City leaders pursuing using privatized fire protection firms to same millions in salaries and pension costs” (instead of pursuing Cal Fire help — an even more bloated bureaucracy with a more powerful union able to contribute more to their campaigns.)

Our communities and public safety is being cannibalized by these public unions, and taking more from average-Joe taxpayers to support these exorbitant pensions and ridiculously early retirements is simply abuse of the taxpayer.

— Garry Cooper, Durham





The Good Old Boy Network is alive and well in Chico

6 Nov

This afternoon I attended a meeting I had never attended before – the Local Government C0mmittee, made up of representatives from county and city elected officials and staffers. This was easily one of the worst meetings I have ever attended.   I sat there looking at a group of trough slickers, people who’ve grown comfortable getting paid to sit  in meetings  for endless hours, their mushroom-shaped asses molded right into those chairs. They don’t have any sense of time anymore, they just sit in these rooms breathing their own gas until they’ve all dissolved into a slurry of communal back-scratching.

That would include the ones we may or may not have voted for – Randall Stone, Scott Gruendl,  City of Chico;  Maureen Kirk, Larry Wahl, County board of Stupes; Cory Honea, Butte County Sheriff. Excuse me if watching these morons in meetings has left me without an ounce of respect for any of them. They’ve all completely lost touch with what they’re supposed to be doing, and WHO they’re supposed to be serving. Then there’s the usual collection of ass-sucking bureaucrats who go whichever way the wind blows – Chico City Manager Brian Nakamura, representatives from the police department, and then those drip-lickers from agencies like Butte Environmental Council and “park volunteer” Susan Mason, of Fiends of Bidwell Park.

Again, I’ll say, these people have made a life of sitting in meetings on our dime. While we’re out hustling to survive, these soft-handed help-themselvers are sitting in a gorgeously appointed room with a brand new H/A system and fancy furniture, pretending to work for a living. They’re no better than the freaks who hang around the outside of the building. 

The meeting didn’t start until 3:45. That sucks for me, I’m not a professional mushroom ass, I have other responsibilities. And, I like to use my bike to get around – it sure beats the hell out of going everywhere in a conga line of cars – but that limits me to daylight hours. It now starts to get dark at 5 pm, and I don’t feel too secure running around alone in what this council has done to my town after that hour. Lights don’t help, unless we’re talking about a Maglite 6 cell D, or how about a set of nunchucks strung with LED’s?

I also notice, the afternoon and evening meetings are not that productive. I’m not the only person who’s been up all day. Jennifer Macarthy, the county Economic and Community Development Manager  who was supposed to be running this meeting, seemed to forget what she was doing, and let the first topic run off subject a number of times. This was particularly annoying when people insisted on addressing the next topic on the agenda, and then expected to make the same remarks during that conversation as well. Every now and then, sometimes with a nudge from Mo Kirk, Jennifer seemed to remember that she was supposed to be keeping people on subject. This discussion of cleaning up homeless camps ran at least 20 minutes long, at least, with people asking to make just one more off-subject remark after another, and Jennifer allowing them. When one woman’s off-subject comment was ignored, gadfly Emily Alma raised her pudgy little mitt to insist somebody answer the woman. At this point, I wanted to re-enact these old bits from “All in the Family”


I went to hear the report on the garbage franchise contract now being stitched together in a cooperative effort between Butte County and the city of Chico. This deal will give either Waste Management or Recology,  or both, exclusive franchise zones in Butte County and in Chico. This means you no longer pick your own hauler, and there’ll be no more incentive for these companies to keep our costs down. There will also be admitted but as yet undisclosed increases in costs for the city of Chico, as well as liability issues. 

Given remarks I’ve heard lately and again at today’s meeting, this is already a done deal in both the county and the city. Right now they’re playing the haulers against each other, nudging them into giving up as much as possible. Today I again heard mentioned the idea that whoever gets the permit should be willing to do all kinds of free services for the city of Chico, like pick up trash in city parks for free, provide free dumpsters for community clean-ups, free street sweeping, etc.

Brian Nakamura has also been running around town saying that we need some kind of prod to make our haulers abide by the laws – during last night’s City Council meeting,  Recology manager Joe Matz finally took exception to this trash talk Nakamura has been spewing. Nakamura said to a Tea Party gathering recently that the garbage companies would use Butte County as a dumping place for their old substandard trucks, that they’d cut recycling services to save money, and all kinds of other fear mongering if we don’t have this franchise to hold over them. Matz reminded everybody last night that all of California has the same air quality laws and vehicle standards. What is Nakamura trying to pull here?

Well, that’s a rhetorical question, you know the answer, I know the answer – he wants the hugely increased fees to pay down the UNFUNDED PENSION LIABILITY. What does he think, that like Herman Goering, he can just keep repeating his Big Lies until they become the truth?

I didn’t have to stay for the rest of the meeting to  tell you what when on – Good Old Boy network. They allow women in now, but it’s all the same stuff that’s always gone on. Our county and city are run by the talking heads, and they run things to their advantage. Your elected officials are just as bad as staff  – city councilors get a small stipend and a big health insurance policy, and last time I checked, county supervisors were being paid almost $60,000 in salary, plus benefits. None of these people are going to rock their little boat. You have to rock it for them every four years, and it’s time for Gruendl, Wahl and Kirk to take a little swim.