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This board meeting included a presentation by County Counsel regarding the scope of services provided to the board and staff of Trinity County.  We also received a presentation about a Garden Club-sponsored program to place hanging flower baskets along Main Street in Weaverville.  There was a good deal of Public Comment related to river releases, reports from Department Heads, Supervisors and more.

Here are the notes I took during the meeting. Please understand that this is not meant to be a comprehensive documentation of discussions and decisions that took place.


  • Chair Cox reported out


Board of Supervisors

1.1   Receive a presentation from County Counsel Margaret Long describing the scope of professional legal services contractually provided to Trinity County by Prentice l Long PC.

  • 7 attorneys assigned to Trinity County
  • 4 full time attorney and 1.5 support staff equivalents allocated to Trinity County
  • Public Records Act – almost a 1/2 time equivalent
    • Can take between 2 and 42 hours
    • 147 requests responded to in 2022
    • Response required in 10 days… 14 day extension period available
  • Board Meetings are about 3% of time the firm spends on county business
  • Average 180 hours/mo working with departments
  • Average 79 emails/texts per day to Margaret on a daily basis
  • Have “filled in” when staff vacancies lead to more demand for support
  • Significant involvement in personnel matters… including Union negotiations
    • 5 bargaining units
  • 308 contracts reviewed in 2022
  • 27 cases involving litigation in 2022
  • 170 parcels cited for excessive cannabis cultivation in 2022
    • 150 self abated
    • 12 cased involved court action
  • Dependency – 28 families came into Child Welfare Services in 2022
  • Public Guardian – 25 individuals and 287.7 hours in 2022
  • Public Administrator – supports the District Attorney’s office due to staffing
    • Administers the estate of a Trinity County resident who dies without a will or family in CA

1.2   Receive a presentation on the Downtown Flower Basket Project.

  • Renie Ryan – Garden Club leading Hanging Basket project in downtown Weaverville
  • 32 Baskets will hang on 20 light poles
  • $100 to $150 cost per basket will be covered by sponsors (17 already sponsored)
    • Signs will be hung with baskets to recognize sponsors
  • $413.75 cost per hook (for specialty hooks that work on our light poles)
    • Local fabricator may be able to create hooks for 1/2 the cost
  • May need BOS letter regarding CalTrans encroachment permit
  • Contact Renie if you are interested in sponsoring

1.3   Adopt a Proclamation recognizing April 2023 as Friday Night Live month.

  • Members of our local program youth leadership team presented about the FNL initiative
  • Highlighted examples of work they are doing including “Take Back our Bathrooms” to eliminate tobacco/vaping.
  • The board approved this proclamation which Chair Cox presented to the group

Clerk of the Board

1.4   Receive an update from U.S. Forest Service representatives regarding matters of interest in Trinity County.

  • Tara Jones | USFS
  • Hiring continues
  • Timber sales are coming soon
  • Increasing planning capacity by partnering with local organizations (RCD)
  • Burning of piles continues
  • Bowerman Project is open for input


1.5   Adopt a Proclamation of appreciation recognizing Business Manager Robi Camacho upon her retirement after 33 years of service to Trinity County.

  • The board approved the proclamation and Chair Cox presented to Robin Camacho.


  • Concerns shared regarding the high water flows currently underway
    • Pine Cove Marina has pulled boats out of the water and are losing business and feels this is severely impacting her business in the short term and is concerned about the long term impacts
    • Water Bar concerns shared of economic impact across many small/local businesses
    • Waterways Alliance being formed to support interests of those affected by water flow decisions
    • Fishing Guide shared concerns regarding significant economic impact in the Lewiston area due to the timing of new high flows… with concern that it would be even worse next year if they start in December.  Noted concerns regard the impact on the stretch of river that opens for fly fishing in the first week of April.
    • Trailhead Pizza shared similar concerns
    • Concern that too much water is being released when the lake is so low.  Suggested asking the Tribes to not fish for a year or two to help the fish population recover.  Suggested holding larger water releases until later in the year when we need it for temperature control
    • Fishing Guide shared that his contribution (along with his clients) contribute almost $60,000 to the economy during the Dec 15 to April 15 period that will be impacted by the new high water flow plan/schedule.  He suggested that $600,000 could also be lost from DIY fishers
    • Indian Creek Lodge was recording record-levels before the new release schedule was implemented.  Very concerned about the economic impact.
    • Fisheries Biologist for Yurok Tribe – shared that river needs scouring flows to regenerate.  Indicated that science indicates that the timing of these releases is best for the fish.  Shared concerns that there are misconceptions about the temperatures needed to support fish.
    • Concerns shared about the potential for too little water available to support power generation.  Mentioned concerns about other creatures impacted… not just the fish.
    • Call for the BOS to push the BOR and TRRP to dial back the amount of water being released.
    • Tom Stokely (Safe California Salmon) – endorsed presentation by Paul Hauser.  Called for change in plans to maintain a higher minimum lake level.  Believes 1.2 million acre feet is the minimum we should work toward.  Apologized to Fish & Game Commission and BOS for confusion and stress related to changes in his input regarding these matters.
    • Concerns raised about downstream flooding, erosion, etc.  Mentioned power generation concerns and suggested that the BOS reach out to Governor and others to gain support for higher lake levels
    • Campgrounds representative reported significant economic impact from low lake levels
    • Concerns regarding the downturn in tourism because of low lake levels.  Called for a multi-year perspective that would reduce releases in cases like this when past years were extreme drought.
    • Concern about sediment build up in Lewiston Lake due to very high releases
    • Keith Groves supported Tom Stokely’s comments and called for support of raising the minimum lake levels – called for 1.5 million as new minimum
    • Kiana Abel of TRRP – clarifying that they do not have the authority to reduce water level releases.  Indicated that TRRP does support an increase in minimum lake levels.
  • Veronica Kathy-Albiez – encouraged county counsel attendance at Planning Commission meetings
  • Adrien Keyes and Rhoda requested that the BOS sign a letter of support for AB 1111 – to support small cannabis producer event sales license.



Report from Department Heads

  • Drew Plebani | Cannabis Division Director
    • 168 noticed for CEQA
    • 106 of these picked up/active
    •  …
    • 3 retail applications…
      • 1 is active in Weaverville
      • 1 pending in Hayfork
      • 1 pending in Douglas City
  • Margaret Long | County Counsel
    •  Reported out on settlement of Carlson litigation meeting

Report from County Administrative Officer

  • Liz Hamilton | Interim CAO
    • This was Liz’s last meeting in this interim role
    • She served the county in this role for 13 weeks

Report from Members of the Board of Supervisors

Ric Leutwyler

  • Out of County Travel
    • CSAC Legislative Conference & Board Meeting | Sacramento | 4.12-13
    • Cal OSBA (California Office of the Small Business Advocate) | Redwood Coast Regional Meeting | Eureka | 4.10.23
  • PSA2 Area Agency on Aging
    • Executive Board Meeting on Monday
    • Jill to report out as Chair
  • Trinity County Fire Chiefs Association
    • Offered my apologies for the failure of the snow maintenance of VFD drives
    • USFS reports continued hiring and indicated that limited staff will lead to no staff for Coffee Creek this year.  They confirmed that other resources will be ready to respond as needed.
    • Emergency Communications – I followed up again with Frontier’s CEO after the Sheriff informed me of additional delays.  I was contacted the next day by an executive who is helping to expedite implementation.  Currently scheduled for 4.19.  Additional steps must be taken (once this is implemented) to restore communications across the county.
  • CSAC
    • The AT HOME initiative to address homeliness was the major focus of the agenda(s)
    • I emphasized the importance of flexibility in how counties address challenges in this arena – siting the extensive loss of homes due to wildfires and the skyrocketing costs of homeowners insurance in Trinity County.
    • CSAC is asking that all counties consider endorsing the program.  They invited each county to identify and “red flags” seen in the program as it relates to their individual county’s needs/situation.  Our board needs to decide how we will address this request.
    • National Center for Public Lands Counties
      • will do research to support ongoing efforts to obtain PILT (payments in lieu of taxes) funding
      • looking for up to 1% of LATCF funds that were recently provided by the federal government.  This would be a one-time funding request as plans are to operate off the interest of funds raised.  Our board needs to decide how we will address this request.
  • Cal OSBA
    • Joined approximately 40 participants in a discussion regarding the state of small businesses associated with cannabis in California.  Participants included Supervisors, Bankers, Cultivators, Distributors, Economic Development Council Representatives, Cannabis-focused Organization Leaders, and more.
    • Adrien Keyes (TCAA President) and Drew Plebani (Cannabis Department Director) also participated in this session.
  • Cannabis Retail
    • Visited our new retail location in the Holiday Market/CVS parking lot
    • Over 100 people visited since soft opening on Friday… 70% over the age of 55
    • Close to $400 in sales tax collected on behalf of TC as of Monday morning
    • Looking forward to carrying more of TC product once manufacturing/distribution facilities get up and running in TC

Jill Cox

  • PSA2 Board Meeting (Area Agency on Aging)
    • Next meeting May 15 at 10AM
  • PILT Funding (payment in lieu of taxes)
    • Working with others to collect information that will support our efforts
  • Shasta College | Kevin O’Rourke
    • Will be presenting to the BOS

Liam Gogan

  • Participated in Town Hall Meeting in Lewiston regarding river matters.  Similar feedback was heard during public comment today

Heidi Carpenter-Harris

  • Hawkins Bar Community & Volunteer Fire Dept meeting
    • Fire Dept insurance has increased substantially… causing a financial strain
    • Community is seeking approval for placement of a generator to support their water pump
  • Hoopa Ambulance Service in Cedar Flats area may be cutoff due to funding
    • Ongoing concerns with emergency communications challenges

Dan Frasier

  • Nothing to report

Reports from Ad Hocs:

A. Good Neighbor Authority

  • Winding up efforts to get this in place
  • Specific Project Agreement is also under development

B. Strategic Plan

  • Handoff meeting with new CAO on 4.28

C. Trinity County Water

  • Discussion about the possibility of creating a “pause” led to recommendation for us to hold an emergency closed session to discuss initiation of litigation – because information was received after the deadline and action is needed prior to the next board meeting.
  • The board approved the motion to schedule and emergency closed session – at the end of this public meeting

D. Cannabis Ordinance

  • Continue weekly meetings
  • Planning Commission to consider changes to the term/definition used to determine if special approval is required.   If approved, this will clear the way for dozens of applications (previously approved) to be renewed without having to go through a new variance-related hearing.
  • Drew Plebani explained that we have experienced another delay in receipt of the first draft
  • We are hoping for public workshops in May… consultants are requesting that timing be coordinated with their time in-county for general plan community workshops
  • Chair Cox shared a description of Scope and Timing/Duration of this Ad Hoc Committee

E. Economic Development

  • Chair Cox and I met with representatives of Shasta College to learn more about how our funding of their work is benefiting Trinity County.  We learned that this organization can be a strong conduit for us when seeking a share of grant funds available for both the planning and implementation of economic development initiatives.  He was impressed with the work already done in this area by Trinity County… indicating this puts us in a strong position for this process.
  • TOT Partner Meetings – continuing efforts to create stronger impact from investment of TOT funds
  • Congressman Huffman indicates support for a Trinity County initiative based on the unity seen among TOT Partners.

F. California Home Insurance

  • Supervisor Carpenter-Harris and I were assigned to reach out to the Insurance Commissioner (and others as appropriate) to raise awareness regarding the significant challenges being face by homeowners in Trinity County.  I reached out to CSAC representatives for assistance while in Sacramento.
  • I have requested an opportunity for us to review the CalFire Fire Hazard Maps for Trinity County


Board of Supervisors

3.2   Authorize the Chairman to sign letters of support regarding water storage and water requirements.

  • This item was pulled for discussion
  • The board approved pulling this matter from the agenda to be considered on the May 2 agenda.
  • The board approved all other items on the consent calendar



4.1   Adopt a Resolution which designates Director of Environmental Health, Kristalynn Anderson, to be designated to approve Fire Plans for Cannabis Manufacturing, and that a future building official and/or Local Fire District Fire Chief with the appropriate qualifications/ certifications may approve fire plans as needed.

  • Drew Plebani explained the reason for moving in this direction.  He indicated his view that, beyond review by the designee, all VFDs should visit the sites to become familiar with the facilities they will be relied on to protect.
  • Kristy Anderson noted that her department has already been reviewing these plans.  Will be CalFire certified by July 10th.  Cody (Building Dept) will also complete the certification training.
  • Stamped Engineered Plan and Fire & Life Safety Plans are required.
  • No manufacturing applications can be approved prior to sign off by certified representative
  • Public Comment – Keith Groves indicated that fire chief’s did not want to be individually involved and raised question about our participation in CUPA.  Kristy confirmed that we are in a 12 month transition process that should be complete by the end of this fiscal year.  Certified Unified Program Agencies.
  • The board approved a modified version of this motion – adding the requirement for Local Fire District Chiefs to be invited to participate in a site inspection.

Human Resources

4.2  Housing Case Manager Pay Range

  • The board approved this matter as presented


4.3   Approve a budget adjustment for FY 22/23 for Jail Health. Increase in General Fund appropriations in the amount of $130,000; current contingency balance is $365,050.

  • Unusually high level of health related costs for the Jail
  • The board approved this matter as presented


5.1   Conference with Legal Counsel – Existing Litigation | No. of Cases: one


I hope these notes are helpful in your efforts to stay informed about county matters.  For a more comprehensive understanding of what took place…


Sharing Information  |  Encouraging Engagement