Mad River Current Tuesday, July 25: Supes may back Coast Seafoods; setback for covered bridge

Support for Coast Seafoods?

The Board of Supervisors convenes this morning, starting at 9 a.m. at the County Courthouse, and will vote on whether to send a letter of support backing Coast Seafoods' request for an extension of its permits to grow oysters in Humboldt Bay.

Coast Seafood goes before the California Coastal Commission next month. You can see the board's draft letter in support of the Coast Seafoods by clicking on Letter of Support for Coast Seafood Request.

For background, click on "Environmental groups split on oyster farm expansion."

Setback for saving Brookwood Covered Bridge

An effort to repair and preserve the Brookwood Covered Bridge in Jacoby Creek suffered a setback when the bids received to do the work came in twice as high as an engineer's estimate for the project.

Brookwood Covered Bridge. Photo by Matt Filar | Union

Quincy Engineering, a consulting firm, had estimated that replacing the rotten wood and making other repairs to the red covered bridge would cost about $398,000. However, when the project was put out to bid, that estimate wasn't even close.

The lowest bidder was Mercer-Fraser of Eureka, which offered to do the work for $819,610, 121 percent over the engineer's estimate. Danco submitted a bid of $922.610,  148 percent over the estimate. The Board of Supervisors is scheduled at today's meeting to reject the bids. Public Works will then look into getting additional federal funding for the repairs, will explore cost reductions and will look at soliciting bids from more companies.

Drone video of Manila Beach

This video was posted on YouTube this week and shows some folks walking on a pretty trail to Manila Beach. Check it out.

New government on the peninsula?

Also at today's meeting, the Board of Supervisors will decide whether to put the formation of a new Peninsula Community Services District on the November ballot. This will allow voters in Samoa, Finn Town and the industrial wonderland of Fairhaven to decide whether they want a new government.

The new government would provide water and sewer service to the town of Samoa, and water service to Finn Town and Fairhaven. The district's sewer and water employees would be cross-trained as firefighters, and would be available during the day to respond to calls.

The whole thing is explained in this article.

Humboldt Bay Social Club

Speaking of the peninsula, did you know there's a new bar at Samoa Field? Yep. And the owners will sell you oysters that you can grill yourself. Learn about the new bar, along with a variety of other new restaurants, by clicking here.


Tourist carjacked along Avenue of the Giants

AVENUE OF THE GIANTS – A woman was carjacked Monday morning, July 24 while parked along the Avenue of Giants in Southern Humboldt.

At about 7:55 a.m. a woman from out of the state was parked along the Avenue of the Giants near the Immortal Tree. She was approached by a bald, white male adult who pulled her out of the vehicle at gunpoint.

The suspect was last seen driving her vehicle southbound on the Avenue of the Giants. The victim reported seeing a white four-door sedan, possibly a Toyota, leave the area as well. It is a possibility that the sedan transported the suspect to the scene.

Later that day at about 12:19 p.m. the Sheriff’s Office received a telephone call from a resident who lives on Dyerville Loop Road near the dump. The resident reported finding a strange vehicle abandoned in his driveway. Deputies responded to the area and found the abandoned vehicle was the reported stolen vehicle.

The suspect was not located after a search of the area.

The Sheriff’s Office asks anyone with information regarding this investigation call (707) 445-7251.

Thanking Andy Mills

The Board of Supervisors is scheduled to vote today  on a joint proclamation thanking outgoing Eureka Police Chief Andy Mills for his service to the community. Mills ended his tenure in Eureka last week to take the position of police chief for Santa Cruz.  You can read Mills' parting thoughts, posted in yesterday's Mad River Current, by clicking here.


Lightning warning & weather

According to the  National Weather Service, there may be lightning, small hail and gusty winds between Garberville and Eureka. There's also a 20 percent chance of showers and thunder here in Arcata after 11 a.m. Later, it should be mostly sunny.


Arcata Fire board meeting

The Arcata Fire District Board of Directors will gather today at 12:30 p.m. in the spanking-new McKinleyville Fire Station Conference Room at 2149 Central Ave. in McKinleyville. The board will vote on whether to make a lump-sum payment of $347,450 to CalPERS to pay its annual "unfunded liability."

The district pays CalPERS every two weeks to fund pensions for its employees. The unfunded liability payments are in addition to the payments made at the end of each pay period.

Fire Chief Justin McDonald said that by making one big payment a year, instead of using the monthly option, the district saves about $12,794.

Today's meeting is expected to last about 5 minutes, más o menos.


Airport Advisory Committee

The Humboldt County Airport Advisory Committee convenes today at 6 p.m. at  the Prosperity Center, 520 E St., Eureka.  The committee will hear updated on the Garberville Airport and the county's airport budget, among other things.

Tax bills on their way!

If you're a merchant or you own a building on leased land, get ready to pay some taxes. The Humboldt County Tax Collector is mailing out tax bills. Oh joy!

From the Humboldt County Tax Collector:

2017-18 Unsecured Property tax bills will be mailed out no later than July 31, 2017 and are due by August 31, 2017. Any payment not postmarked by the August 31st deadline will be subject to a 10% penalty.

Unsecured Property Tax Bills are issued for:
 • BusinessProperty (ex: equipment, machinery, computers, desks, etc.)
• Boats
• Boat Berths
• Aircrafts
• Aircraft Hangars
• Possessory Interest for use of space (ex: horse stables, rental space in government buildings, etc.)
• Improvements on Leased Land

Tax Bills that remain unpaid after the August 31st deadline are considered delinquent and are subject to the following penalties and actions.

September: 10% late penalty, $8.00 notice fee per each delinquent notice mailed.

October: $29.00 lien intent fee and property owner will beliened.

November: $17.00 to release the lien filed against owner.

December: Notice is sent to the Franchise Tax Board to seize the taxes owed from lien holder’s State Income Tax Refund

February: $45.00 for notice sent tobanks to seize the taxes owed from the lien holder’s bank accounts (banks may charge lien holder additional fees associated with the seizure)

An unsecured property tax bill covers the fiscal year beginning July 1 and ending June 30. The Assessor establishes the value of the property on January 1 each year. This date is referred to as the lien date. The owner of the property on the lien date is considered the lien holder and is responsible for the tax bill regardless of any change of ownership that may occur during the fiscal year.


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