(Washington, DC) – Congressman Doug LaMalfa (R-Richvale) issued the following statement after supporting H.R. 7010, the Paycheck Protection Program Flexibility Act, which would relax restrictions on Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loan recipients. This bill would:
LaMalfa said: “The Paycheck Protection Program has become a lifeline for millions of small businesses across the country. However, the program has also shown that Congress needed to provide more flexibility as businesses across the nation begin to safely re-open. Today’s legislation achieves these reforms and helps reinforce the clear national directive that we will support our small businesses during this pandemic.”
Congressman Doug LaMalfa is a lifelong farmer representing California’s First Congressional District, including Butte, Glenn, Lassen, Modoc, Nevada, Placer, Plumas, Shasta, Sierra, Siskiyou and Tehama Counties.
Nevada City, Calif. — The Tahoe National Forest is increasing access to the public by providing additional developed recreational opportunities. We encourage visitors to check our website and social media pages for the most up-to-date information on what is open so that you can plan your visit. You can also call your local ranger station during normal business hours Monday-Friday 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
We continue to recommend that you recreate locally. All visitors should practice self-sufficiency during your visits to national forests. Recreating responsibly will help ensure that expanded access to recreational facilities, services, and opportunities continues. Responsible recreation practices should be maintained at all times, including:
• Maintaining at least six feet distancing from others
• Do not gather in groups and please follow the latest guidance from officials
• Communicate with others as you pass. Alert trail users of your presence and step aside to let others pass
• Pack out your trash and leave with everything you bring in and use.
• All services may not be available, so please plan accordingly.
The Tahoe National Forest will continue to phase in opening of facilities and services as county policies and facility preparations allow. For complete list of current updates, please visit our webpage at https://www.fs.usda.gov/tahoe. Please click on the Tahoe National Forest Update: May 28-June 4.
For additional information, please visit the Tahoe National Forest website at https://www.fs.usda.gov/tahoe; Facebook facebook.com/TahoeNF and Twittertwitter.com/Tahoe_NF.
By Harold Pease, Ph.D.
Is it possible Americans are watching the death of free speech and therefore liberty? The defiance of the 1st and 4th Amendments of the Bill of Rights from March-May by Democrat governors has been beyond mind boggling and demonstrates that the Constitution, at least in these states, is on a ventilator.
But the growing collusion between Big Tech and government has been even more threatening as the former seems hell-bent on political censorship in favor of the left. At a time when the world is threatened by an unknown virus dissenting speech from physicians who work with the virus would be most valued, but it was stifled.
The examples of big tech censorship are many, we identify only two. Dr Knuit M. Wittkowski, former head of biostatistics epidemiology and research design at Rockefeller University, argued that massive lockdowns, mass quarantines, were a mistake, “We will see more cases among the elderly, because we have prevented the schoolchildren from creating herd immunity.” A dissenting view that conflicted with that of the government. “Google decided that disagreeing with the government is forbidden” (Tucker Carlson Tonight, May 19, 2020).
In mid April two Bakersfield, California physicians, Dan Erickson and Arten Massihi reported similarly, “Our immune system is used to touching. We share bacteria, staphylococcus, streptococcal bacteria, viruses. We develop an immune response, dealing to this stuff…. When you take that away from me,” Erickson continues, “My immune system drops as I shelter in place…. You keep me there for months, it drops more. Sheltering in place decreases your immune system and then as we all come out of shelter in place with a lower immune system, and start trading viruses, bacteria, what do you think's going to happen? Disease is going to spike” (https://youtu.be/xfLVxx_lBLU). YouTube, decided to back lockdown state governors and removed both videos because they conflicted with the government’s position.
YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki, in an interview with CNN, admitted that, “Anything that would go against World Health Organization recommendations, would be a violation of our policy.” It would be classed as unsubstantiated or harmful misinformation and therefore removed (Tim Hinchliffe, “Big tech COVID-19 surveillance data & censorship threaten privacy & free speech: op-ed,” The Sociable, April 22, 2020).
In effect Big Tech has created an unholy alliance with Big Government and Big International agencies against the people to control the parameters of acceptable opinion and speech world wide. Harmeet Dillon, civil rights attorney, acknowledged that these companies, although private, have exceeded the rights of being just private. “But where the government is actually instructing and conspiring, which is happening with some of these states, contacting and working with Google, Facebook, Twitter and others to say take down the misinformation. That is the government using these tech companies as their tools and all of a sudden, it's a whole different scenario in terms of legal liability, as well as in terms of the terrible impact on America.” (Tucker Carlson Tonight, May 19, 2020).
Facebook, defining political speech it disagreed with as hate speech, in 2018 banned Infowars’ Alex Jones from his Internet audience of millions. More recently, using the virus as an excuse, it began removing what it called misinformation speech, basically blocking anything out of harmony with the WHO. Now it is removing “event posts for anti-lockdown protests in various US states, in tandem with state officials”—specifically in California, New Jersey and Nebraska. “Facebook ‘reached out to state officials to understand the scope of their orders’ and resolved to ‘remove the posts when gatherings do not follow the health parameters established by the government and are therefore unlawful’, such as when protests intend to flout social-distancing rules.” They have made themselves “arbiters of truth” (Tom Slater, “We need to stop the spread of Big Tech censorship,” Spiked, May 8, 2020).
Facebook and YouTube both “monopolize huge arenas of public discussion. Writers and thinkers unable to promote their work on Facebook, or video makers unable to upload their work to YouTube, are effectively denied access to a significant portion of what now constitutes the public square. At a time when billions of people are under house arrest, and the literal public square is largely off-limits, this is an even more sinister development. As is the fact that governments and powerful organizations seem to be working hand in glove with tech firms to enforce conformity” (Ibid.).
Emboldened by their new power they will only accelerate it. “Facebook has stressed that state governments did not ask them to remove specific posts. But what seems to have happened is almost worse. Facebook moderators appear to be banning events posts on the basis of what they reckon the laws of a particular state constitute” (Ibid.).
How serious is this? Social platforms were already important theaters for democratic participation and deliberation; now they’re the only game in town (Sam Adler-Bell, “Facebook Is Removing Protest Pages. That’s a Terrible Precedent,” Harvard Law Today, April 24, 2020).
Tucker Carlson assessed the damage to liberty, “The right to have your own opinions, to think for yourself, to disagree with your elected leaders, politicians, was the most basic right that every American enjoyed for 240 years, it was the signature right of this country.” He warned, “They’re going to try and censor Fox News next, you watch” (Tonight, May 19, 2020).
Dr. Harold Pease is a syndicated columnist and an expert on the United States Constitution. He has dedicated his career to studying the writings of the Founding Fathers and applying that knowledge to current events. He taught history and political science from this perspective for over 30 years at Taft College. Newspapers have permission to publish this column. To read more of his weekly articles, please visit www.LibertyUnderFire.org.
Memorial Day Weekend was a bit unusual in Sierra County this year. Most of the “summer people”, those who have private summer homes or USFS Recreational Recreation Cabins in the area above Sierra City, open their summer homes on Memorial Weekend. Several cabins in Clark Station and Carvin Creek Tracts were occupied, however Carvin Creek, The San Francisco Camp and Clark Station all had county notices to stay away on their entry signs.
The Haskell Creek Tract is one of a very few USF Tracts in the United States to have its own water system. Its fire hydrants connect with the USFS and Sierra City Volunteer Fire Department’s hoses in case of fire in the area. There was no notice at Haskell, and several of its summer residents are looking to sheltering in place for a good part of the summer.
Driving down Highway 49 from Yuba Pass to Gold Lake Road, it was apparent that the USFS has been at work doing wild fire remediation, thinning and clearing areas along Highway 49 and around residences, summer home tracts, and camp grounds to help mitigate wildfire threat.
With the recent torrential rains, dirt roads in the Lakes Basin suffered washouts. Many of them will need major repairs. The Forest Service is also doing some logging along Gold Lake Road.
Forest Service camp grounds along Highway 49 and over Gold Lake Road are closed. However, private campgrounds and RV parks along Highway 70 from the Greagle turn-off to Beckworth were open and full. The boat launch area at Gold Lake was busy, but it was day use only, no camping.
Everyone we spoke with was concentrating on social distancing. Some Haskell residents are going on long hikes, kayaking on isolated lakes or Gold Lake and/or lake fishing. A few area restaurants in the area are open for take-out. Bassetts is open and their gas pump is open. There is no gas available in Downieville or Sierra City. One cabin owner had a new electric car and tried it out on this trip. He and his wife were very pleased with the car and its action on the road.
This was a great weekend for birding-in-place. Sitting on our porch we watched Evening Grosbeaks, Dark-eyed Juncos, a pair of White-headed Woodpeckers, Mountain Chickadees, Cassin’s Finches and Purple Finches, Red-breasted Nuthatches, Pine Siskins, and Yellow-rumped Warblers. Stellar Jays were very active, and there were the usual American Robins. We heard the cry of a hawk overhead but could not see what it was. (As the Yellow-rumped Warblers always disappear from the Reno area just before Memorial Day, we have always joked that we are seeing the same birds. We see them at our bird feeders in Reno throughout the fall and winter and at Haskell in the summer.)
Driving through Sierra Valley on the way to the cabin, we saw multiple Brewer, Red-winged and Yellow-headed blackbirds, as well as Tree, Cliff, Barn and Rough-winged Swallows, nesting Sand-Hill Cranes, American Coots, Gadwalls, and other ducks as well as Ravens, Crows and Turkey Vultures. Sierra Valley is a nice day’s drive from Reno, without having to stop anywhere. However, if you do it on a Friday, you can shop at the Farmer’s Market at the Romano Farms just south of Beckworth on Route 24.
As noted in a previous Booster article, Sierra Valley depends on the income from its summer residents. Many of the usual resorts are not open yet. If you are planning to go to your summer cabin or have plans to stay somewhere in Sierra County, check in with your favorite resorts and restaurants well ahead of time to see if they are open and if they are not, ask if they have take-out. Remember to take your masks and gloves if you are going to be in a public place.
To Protect Your People And Animals
While COVID-19 remains in the front of everyone’s mind, the coming of mosquito season means that both people and livestock are vulnerable to other serious illnesses if the farm infrastructure is not sound.
Mosquitoes can transmit a number of diseases, including dengue, malaria, yellow fever, Zika and West Nile virus. Farms provide a breeding ground for mosquitoes in numerous places. But plenty of measures can be taken to protect the landscape, waters, and structures from mass mosquito gathering and the disease they bring, says David Anderson (www.horsedrinker.com), president and CEO of Bar-Bar-A, a company that produces mosquito- and algae-free automatic livestock drinkers.
“Mosquitoes are a real threat to farms everywhere,” Anderson says. “They carry disease that can affect humans as well as animals, while also affecting a livestock operation’s bottom line.
“Mosquitoes multiply quickly; females lay about 100 eggs at a time. So it can be a constant battle keeping their population down without knowing the preventative tactics you can use in the many places where they’re attracted.”
Anderson offers the following tips to firm up the farm infrastructure and eliminate mosquito breeding grounds:
“You can greatly reduce the amount of mosquitoes on your farm, but it takes extra effort,” Anderson says. “But with the health of your people and livestock at risk, it’s so well worth it.”
About David Anderson
D George Anderson (www.horsedrinker.com) is an animal advocate, entrepreneur and President/CEO of Bar-Bar-A Horse & Livestock Drinkers. A proponent for horse and livestock safe keeping, his company has pushed to eliminate the potential for shock and electrocution of livestock, stemming from the use of water and electricity and the standing water that can contribute to viruses and unhealthy drinking water for animals. A developer of varied products and designs, he received an International MBA from Thunderbird School of Global Management in Glendale, AZ. An international traveling enthusiast, he studied Hebrew in Israel, Arabic in North Africa and Mandarin Chinese in Beijing.
On 5-26-2020 The Plumas County Sheriff’s Office received a report of a suspicious circumstance that occurred the previous evening in the City Of Portola CA. Upon further investigation it was determined an attempted Kidnapping of two juveniles had occurred. The suspect reportedly followed the victims around town and contacted them at three separate locations throughout the night. During the contacts the suspect attempted to coerce the victims into his vehicle by telling them he knew one of their relatives and stated the relative asked him to give them a ride home. Through the investigation the suspect was identified as Joshua Stephan Bevan of Portola. He is described as a WMA, 49 years old, approx. 5’5” tall, weighs approx. 140 lbs, with brown hair and Hazel eyes.
Bevan is reportedly driving a white 1994 Lincoln Sedan with CA Lic # 6KSL420.
If you know the whereabouts or see this suspect please immediately call the Plumas County Sheriff’s Office at 530-283-6300 or dial 911.
May 26, 2020 -- The U.S. Census Bureau, in coordination with federal, state and local health officials, will begin to drop off 2020 Census questionnaire packets at front doors of nearly 150,000 households in Northern California that do not have regular mailing addresses, such as homes in rural areas or households that use a post office box. That delivery is called the “Update Leave” operation, and it began March 15 before all fieldwork was suspended March 18 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Field staff have been trained to observe all social distancing protocols and will wear official government-provided personal protective equipment for their safety and the safety of the public. This operation is contactless and follows the most current federal health and safety guidelines.
People are strongly encouraged to respond promptly to the 2020 Census using the ID number included in the questionnaire packet. Responding with a census ID or the paper questionnaire helps ensure the best count of their community. People can respond online, by phone or by using the paper form in the packet.
For more information, please visit the 2020 Census COVID-19 operational adjustments page.
B-roll link - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IPa0vKmgTMI&feature=youtu.be
California Department of Tax and Fee Administration ReportsCannabis Tax Revenues for the First Quarter of 2020
Sacramento – The California Department of Tax and Fee Administration (CDTFA) reported revenue numbers today for cannabis sales for the 1st Quarter of 2020. As of May 15, 2020, California’s cannabis excise tax generated $68.3 million in revenue reported on the 1st Quarter 2020 returns due by April 30, 2020, and the cultivation tax generated $16.4 million.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, 1st Quarter 2020 is a unique reporting period since approximately half of the taxpayers normally reporting have yet to file a return with the CDTFA. Revisions to 1st Quarter 2020 data are expected in mid-August after the 2nd Quarter return filing due date of July 31. Additional information on the relief offered due to the COVID-19 pandemic can be found at www.cdtfa.ca.gov/services/covid19.htm.
Sales tax from cannabis businesses totaled $50.2 million in revenue for the same period. Sales tax applies to sales of cannabis, cannabis products, and other tangible personal property. Certain retail sales of medicinal cannabis are exempt from sales and use taxes when the purchaser provides at the time of purchase a valid Medical Marijuana Identification Card issued by the California Department of Public Health and a valid government-issued identification card.
Total tax revenue reported by the cannabis industry is $134.9 million for 1st Quarter returns due by April 30, 2020. This does not include tax revenue collected by each jurisdiction. Previously reported revenue for 4th Quarter 2019 returns was revised to $177.3 million, which included $85.9 million in cannabis excise tax, $24.1 million in cultivation tax, and $67.3 million in sales tax. Revisions to quarterly data are the result of amended and late returns, and other tax return adjustments.
Since January 2018, total program revenue to date is $1.17 billion, which includes $569.8 million in cannabis excise tax, $140.2 million in cultivation tax, and $456.9 million in sales tax.
In November 2016, California voters approved Proposition 64, the Control, Regulate, and Tax Adult Use of Marijuana Act. Beginning on January 1, 2018, two new cannabis taxes went into effect: a cultivation tax on all harvested cannabis that enters the commercial market and a 15 percent cannabis excise tax upon purchasers of cannabis and cannabis products. In addition, retail sales of cannabis and cannabis products are subject to state and local sales tax. To learn more, visit the Tax Guide for Cannabis Businesses on the CDTFA website.
The California Department of Tax and Fee Administration (CDTFA) administers California’s sales and use, fuel, tobacco, alcohol, and cannabis taxes, as well as a variety of other taxes and fees that fund specific state programs. CDTFA-administered programs account for over $70 billion annually which in turn supports local essential services such as transportation, public safety and health, libraries, schools, social services, and natural resource management programs through the distribution of tax dollars going directly to local communities.
QUINCY, Calif – All Plumas National Forest offices will be closed on Monday, May 25, in observance of Memorial Day. All offices will resume normal (virtual) operating hours on Tuesday, May 26.
For a list of developed recreation opportunities (note: many campgrounds are closed), please see the Forest website and Facebook page. Campfire permits are available online at www.preventwildfireca.org/Campfire-Permit/.
A couple of other safety reminders:
Plumas NF offices closed for Memorial Day
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