At Rafters in Mammoth this coming Tuesday, there will be the inaugural meeting of the “Eastside Know-How Series,” where various folks are supposed to give mini-versions of a “TED” talk, or six-minute sound bites on a whole range of topics. The full list appears in the sidebar column on page 15.
But wouldn’t it be great if we could schedule the following speakers to discuss …
Barry Sternlicht on why he abandoned Mammoth.
Rusty Gregory on how to lobby Town Councils to do what you want them to – and not be responsible for the outcome.
Rob Clark and Peter Tracy on how to hire the worst legal defense team ever.
Elizabeth Tenney on how to get a private project funded with public money.
Any previous Mammoth Lakes Town Manager on how to negotiate a severance package.
Bucky the June Mountain mascot on what it’s like to be a really sucky mascot.
Rick Wood on why it’s impossible to limit himself to just six minutes on any topic.
Dan Watson on how to reduce crime by reporting less of it.
Rich Boccia on how to promote sensitivity training in the workplace.
Paul Rudder, Byng Hunt, Shields Richardson and Tom Cage on how to recruit political candidates.
Ralph Obenberger on how to conduct a “saturation patrol.”
Speaking of Obenberger, it looks like the Mono County Sheriff will have a challenger in the 2014 election cycle – former employee Ingrid Braun.
Braun was let go by Obenberger last year at the end of her probationary period.
At 46, she has already achieved one retirement from the Los Angeles Police Dept., from which she retired as a Lieutenant II.
Braun and her husband, also retired from the LAPD, currently serve in a reserve capacity for the Mammoth Lakes Police Dept.
Braun told The Sheet this week that she had been contacted by people she didn’t even know, encouraging her to run, saying Mono County needed a choice.
The biggest issue Braun sees is a “disconnect” between the Sheriff’s Department and the community it serves.
A prime example of that disconnect were the saturation patrols conducted by the Sheriff’s Department around the time of last summer’s Burning Man festival. While she does not question the legality of what was done, she does question the expenditure of resources on targeting people who are “passing through, sober and not a hazard to the community.”
“What was the benefit to us [as Mono County residents]?” she asked rhetorically.
So, she says, the biggest change needed within the Sheriff’s Department is a “culture shift.”
As it stands, Braun does not believe that Mammoth Lakes should ditch its Police Department in favor of contracting out service with the Sheriff’s Department, precisely because the “Mono County Sheriff’s Office style may not be what the Town needs [at this time].”
One thing Braun has as a challenger that is unique for Mono County is an impressive resume, having spent 12 years (1999-2011) in a supervisory capacity with the LAPD as a watch commander, as the head of a gang/narcotics enforcement unit, and as an investigator and supervisor in the internal affairs division.
Braun says she looks forward to challenging Obenberger just because, “If no one ran against him, he wouldn’t have to explain his policies or his vision.”
She said that in the event she were elected, she would also remove the Undersheriff, whom she believes is too loyal and inextricably linked to the Sheriff.
As for other local races in Mono County, Byng Hunt says he’s probably not running for reelection. If he does, he will have to contend with Stacy Corless and Kirk Stapp, both of whom have told The Sheet they intend to run for the seat.
Meanwhile, Bill Sauser says he is 98% sure he will challenge Larry Johnston for Mammoth’s other Supervisor seat. This would be a rematch. In 2010, Johnston beat Sauser by just five votes.
Now from Inyo correspondent Charles James about Inyo’s outlook for the 2014 election cycle:
The New Year might bring a sense of renewal to many, but more often than not, 2014 will be a continuation of many of the old problems and issues, some of which seem to have the half-life of plutonium. From the Yellow-legged frog and the Greater Sage Grouse issues in Inyo and Mono Counties to the ongoing, if not never-ending, controversies with the City of Los Angeles over the export of water from the Owens Valley to the proposed solar power ranch near the Manzanar Historic Site, plenty of old problems and challenges will be facing voters and residents.
It is elected officials who will often be the ones facing many of the challenges, both old and new. According to County Clerk Registrar Kammi Foote, there are 16 public offices up for consideration, which also include the 4 seats up for re-election on the Board of Education.
As of Thursday morning, Foote said there are 10 incumbents for County public office and 3 newcomers expressing interest in election or reelection.
Ten of the incumbents have filed Petitions in Lieu of Filing Fees, which runs from December 27 to February 20, declaring their intention to run for reelection. To officially run, all candidates, both incumbents and newcomers, must submit a Declaration of Candidacy between February 10 and March 7.
The incumbents and newcomers seeking reelection in Inyo County as of Thursday are:
District 2 County Supervisor Rick Pucci, first elected in June 2010.
Sheriff Bill Lutze, first elected in November 2006.
Superior Court Judge Brian Lamb, first elected in 2002.
District Attorney Tom Hardy, appointed in September, 2013 to serve out the remainder of retired D.A. Malliet’s term.
County Superintendent of Schools Terry McAteer, appointed in August, 2008 to serve out the term of George Lozito and first elected in 2010.
Public Administrator Patricia Barton, first elected in 2006.
County Clerk Registrar Kammi Foote, first elected in June 2010.
Treasurer-Tax Collector Alisha McMurtie, first elected in June 2006.
Auditor-Controller Amy Shepard, who was appointed in May of 2013 to serve out the remainder of Leslie Chapman’s term. Chapman left to go to work as the Director of Finance for Mono County.
Coroner Leon Brune, who has served since 1980, has held office for eight 4-year terms.
County Board of Education District 1 Alden Nash, District 2, David Hefner, District 3, LeAnn Rasmuson and District 4,Chris Langley
8th U.S. Congressional District, created two years ago under redistricting, is currently held by Congressman Paul Cook.
CA Assembly District 26 Assemblywoman Connie Conway
Newcomer General Contractor David Tanksley has filed papers expressing interest in running for District 1 County Supervisor which will be vacant as six-term County Supervisor Linda Arcularius has decided to not run again.
Newcomer Dave Stottlemyre, currently serving on the Bishop City Council has filed paper and it interested in the running for County Tax Assessor.
Newcomer Assistant District Attorney Joel Samuels filed papers on Thursday, January 9, to run for election as District Attorney against the current, appointed D.A. Tom Hardy.
The City of Los Angeles will be hosting a public meeting in Bishop on Monday at 8:00 a.m. on January 13 at LADWP Office at 300 Mandich Street. The purpose of the meeting is to provide information on the progress of LORP [Lower Owens River Project] since it was implemented in 2006. Several 2012-2013 ecological studies and surveys of environmental conditions will be discussed.
Inyo County Water Department Mitigation Manager Larry Freilich, who oversees the project for the county, encourages the public to attend. The project goal was to provide biodiversity, protect endangered species, and encourage sustainable uses that include recreational uses and other activities which would have a beneficial economic benefit to the county by encouraging more visitors to the area.
Freilich has been involved in a number of activities to develop what he calls “Adaptive Management Recommendations.” From keeping track of the number and types of fish, as well as the health of the fish within LORP to livestock management and tules mitigation to free the river for recreational use, it is a multi-faceted project that includes opportunities for volunteers to participate. He is hopeful that the public will be willing to become more involved and promote the project through their comments on the Annual Report, which will be accepted until the close of business on January 28. The Annual Report can be found online at www.ladwp/LORP.
For more information or to submit your comments, send postal mail to Larry Freilich at P.O. Box 337, Independence, CA 93526, call (760) 878-1011, or send an email to email@example.com.