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Saturday, Feb 4, 2023 - 10:30am-12:30pm
Guerneville School 14630 Armstrong Woods Rd, Guerneville, CA

5th District logo

The Office of Supervisor Lynda Hopkins invites you to discuss and recommend what government services should be expanded or added to improve the quality of life in our region! Targeted for completion in late summer 2023, the final study will recommend to the County what government services to improve and propose a funding strategy to achieve these changes.  
Your participation is essential to the success of this effort! 

Click HERE to send your concerns/suggestions in advance and to sign up for project updates.

For more information, e-mail
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Saturday, Feb 4, 2023 9am-4pm
Wildwood Retreat above Guerneville

Forest Unlimited

Please email our volunteer coordinator Harlie Rankin if you can participate.


Forest Unlimited will have additional redwood seedlings to sell at cost, $3 per seedling.

If you have appropriate land or know someone who has, please email us to let us know and approximately how many. We are especially interested in targeting forest land that has been impacted by fire in the past few years.

Since the seedlings are redwoods appropriate forest lands are ones that already have some redwoods or have had redwoods in the recent historic past.

To buying redwood seedlings, email Larry Hanson

Visit the Forest Unlimited website to support their many endeavors!
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Sunday, Feb 5, 2023 9am-4pm
St. Dorothy’s Rest in Camp Meeker

Forest Unlimited

If you don’t know, St. Dorothy's Rest was setup as a retreat for terminally ill children to spend some of their last days in a beautiful natural setting. This it is, and we are committed to improving it. 

Please email the Forest Unlimited volunteer coordinator Harlie Rankin if you can participate.


Forest Unlimited will have additional redwood seedlings to sell at cost, $3 per seedling.

If you have appropriate land or know someone who has, please email us to let us know and approximately how many. We are especially interested in targeting forest land that has been impacted by fire in the past few years.

Since the seedlings are redwoods appropriate forest lands are ones that already have some redwoods or have had redwoods in the recent historic past.

To buying redwood seedlings, email Larry Hanson

Visit the Forest Unlimited website to support their many endeavors!
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Thursday, December 15th, 2022 1-6pm


Planning Commission Board of Zoning Adjustments Public Zoom Meeting

• Lowering the height of the project by a single story has only reduced the number of units by 12. This is because the project developers increased the project's footprint by 5,230 square feet, against the specific request of the BZA to lower the height AND maintain the original footprint.

• The number of parking spaces has been reduced by 26 and still relies on valet stacked parking for larger events with an increase from 15 to 22 stacked spaces. Stacked and juggled Valet Parking would be especially unwise in the event of an emergency evacuation

• Something that hasn't been changed in the design is the size of their 2 meeting rooms: With a 500 person capacity! This suggests that their primary advertising will be directed at Corporations and Convention Planners.

• The revised MND has added a 400 sq ft retail space and boasts: “Guests will not have to leave the resort to use other facilities. If some guests chose to do so, the other public facilities will not be significantly impacted.”

Apparently, even the developer no longer believes that their guests will be adding to the local economy!

For more information, concerns, contact info for written comments and links to revised project documents go HERE.

Tentative Hearing Date Postponed for File No. PLP18-0012
(“The Lodge on Russian River” AKA “Guernewood Park Resort”)

Permit Sonoma intends to recirculate a revised Initial Study and Mitigated Negative Declaration (IS/MND) that responds to comments received on the project during the November 2, 2022 – December 2, 2022 IS/MND public review period. The revised IS/MND will be separately noticed. Therefore, the tentative Board of Zoning Adjustments public hearing date for The Lodge on Russian River (December 15, 2022) has been postponed to a date uncertain.
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Tuesday, March 7th, 2023 4-8pm

zero waste sonoma

Free disposal for Sonoma County residents, by appointment only.

Click HERE for more details.

Click HERE for examples of what's allowed.

Click HERE to make an appointment.
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To be Continued

Vacation rental parking on Monte Rio road
Photo shows example of supposed on-site parking (actually fronting neighboring lot) at a permitted vacation rental in Monte Rio on a narrow unmaintained county road on a steep, heavily wooded, hillside.

Here's hoping that terrain and road conditions are prioritized and that Septic Capacity will be determined by TOTAL number of allowed visitors possibly swimming in the river and using spas and hot tubs with showers in between, NOT by number of bedrooms!

Click HERE to view meeting documents.
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Tsunami hazard map Monte Rio

Locate where you live, work, or visit. If you are in a yellow hazard area after feeling an earthquake that lasts a long time, or you receive an official evacuation notification, evacuate by foot immediately to a green area.

Click HERE to check your area.
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Minh Ta bird sculpture
Click HERE for enlargement.

This driftwood sculpture of a water bird (Egret/Heron/Crane) by Minh Ta was removed from the
Monte Rio triangle on Hwy 116 in early January 2022.

$1,000 reward for information leading to the return of this beloved public sculpture!

Contact Halsey Brochu via:

text: (707) 303-0003
landline: (707) 788-6042
or e-mail
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July 4th

A Message from Steve Baxman

Click HERE for a message from our Fire Chief, courtesy of KRCB Radio and Rhian Miller.
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July 2021

Blue Green Algae

Monte Rio 2021 blue green algae

Read about exposure modes and symptoms at the CDC website.
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24-hour fuel station with 3 pumps

Use Permit and Administrative Design Review to add a 24-hour fuel station with three dispensers to an existing mini-mart operation along a Scenic Corridor on a 0.32- acre parcel. The fuel station would include a 16-foot tall canopy and underground storage tank.

Click HERE for Design Review Referral pdf

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The easiest 'try first' resource for reporting problems in your community: roadside trash, potholes, Sheriff's employee misconduct, homeless outreach, and more!

Some issues get addressed swiftly, some issues are said to be resolved but aren't. Still worth trying. Click here.
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MAC E-NEWS Subscription List!

The Lower Russian River Municipal Advisory Council has an e-news list for meeting announcements, etc. This is the closest thing you will have to access community issues being taken to our local (District 5) supervisor.

Click HERE to sign up for the MACe-news list.
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Saturday, July 18, 2020

Zelda Michaels

Your brilliant and fierce wit as well as your deep love and concern for the Monte Rio community will be sorely missed...
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Blood Alcohol Concentration ( BAC ) Limits

It is illegal for any person to operate a vehicle with a: BAC of 0.08% or higher, if the person is 21 years old or older. BAC of 0.01% or higher, if the person is under 21 years old. BAC of 0.01% or higher at any age, if the person is on a DUI probation.

Exact blood alcohol levels are hard to estimate, but these charts to help men and women know when they've had too much to get behind the wheel.

Here, one drink equals 1.5 ounces of 80 proof liquor (40% alcohol), 12 ounces of beer (4.5% alcohol), or 5 ounces of wine (12% alcohol).

Under current law, everything in red (.08 BAC and higher) is legally intoxicated.

These figures are approximations, and can vary based on how much food is in the drinker's stomach. The charts below are meant as a reference only.

Blood alcohol levels, women

Blood alcohol levels, men
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Russian River
Photo source: Chuck Ramsey, via Nextdoor

The following quotes are from our local Nextdoor by outspoken (and fever-pitched, IMO) people who are convinced that our area is going to Hell in a Hand basket.

Very doom and gloom, but perhaps more homes will become available again as affordable rental units to full-timers who are active in community efforts to keep our area a nice place to live year-round AND a viable, but limited, tourist destination. I say "limited" because I feel we need a healthier balance of Community AND Visitors that is mindful of our over-stressed and under funded infrastructure.

We could also use a large dose of compassion.

“And one of the reasons that Guerneville, & parts of the lower Russian River have so many homeless, is because it has been tolerated here. Not anywhere else. Which is why places like Windsor, Healdsburg , Forestville, Occidental, Bodega Bay, etc... are still clean , & enjoyable towns.

This is a very small area to have over 600 homeless ppl here. And we don’t have the shelters, & all the programs like Santa Rosa & other cities have. And we shouldn’t. It would encourage even more homeless to come here, & destroy this area as being a Tourist area.”

“… And it’s Diseases. All the garbage, human waste, etc... has created a bigger problem of rats. And the rats carry diseases along with the fleas that are on them. It could turn into a disaster.

This was one of my main concerns here, the pollution being done to the river.”

“When you have drug addicts who could care less about anything except , getting high & criminals just out of prison camping in parks with playgrounds, or camping outside your door or defecating & peeing all over your front door of your business or restaurant my sympathy is nil.”

“… what about the business owners who are dealing with this everyday? The destruction of their property, the unsanitary conditions they have to deal with everyday , the transients that attack their customers? The needles, the pollution to our river, creeks, & environment? Not from families nor single ppl having hard luck, but drug users, & criminals who were described as aggressive by residents on Neeley Road. And who presented a fire risk as well as dumping oil in the river? “

“Last weekend my wife and I worked on the river clean up project, it was disgusting, i was brave enough to enter the homeless camps and clean out bags of poop (or scoop it int bags) trash, empty amazon boxes, brought tears to my eyes that the state lets this happen , the leaders in formed me it was insensitive to take there personal belongings so i left there laptop chargers, portable elelectric fans, etc.... im discusted.”

“A wonderful man who has been cleaning up after the Transients & homeless for years in LA., he’s very religious.... lost his right leg a month ago from getting contaminated by all the “ poop”. He got that flesh eating disease. This is no joke. LA has gotten all these diseases now that hasn’t been seen in over a hundred years. And this is the river which is used for ppl’s drinking water & goes to your home. That’s why we only use bottled water, even for our pets.“

“We are being run over already by Meth heads.”

“This Transient problem here on the River is causing more & more crimes such as the poor elderly former marine being abused & stolen from by the “ homeless”.”

“Seeing the filth & destruction to the environment , the crimes committed , and the drugs everywhere should upset every single resident in our community. This is NO JOKE”

“Certain towns do not allow the Transients to take over , like Forestville, & Occidental which has maintained a lovely town. Duncan Mills also seems to have kept the Transients in check. Only Monte Rio, & Guerneville have the more serious problems. “

“…the river is now destroyed by poop…”

“And we too could have disease affect this whole community from this unsanitary, filth. I would NEVER drink the water here. I don’t trust it after seeing these “ camps”. “

“We have more homeless here, per capita then San Francisco! 4 times as many! “

“I spent a week in the mid west and they just laughed at me and my state, how do you defend "hey heard your $$$ house is on shit river, how dumb are you?"

“After having our vacation home in our family for over a hundred years, my hubby & I are discussing selling it& maybe buying something in Tahoe or somewhere else.”

“We are fed up that nothing ever changes, but gets continually worse each year. When the “homeless”, or should I say the 60% or more Meth Heads completely take over , & the tourists decide to go elsewhere, the business’s here will close , & the property will be worthless, as you will have ghost towns. Or worse an area like Stockton. “

“Go read the post about the 87 year old Former Marine, who had over 5 Tweekers take over his house, abuse him & steal his money & live there. This was in GUERNEVILLE, on Neeley Road. And this was this week!

Or the posts about ppl coming up to your front door here & want to come inside to look for their phone,!

Or the lady who lives close to the Northwood Golf Course who found a man looking into the windows of her neighbor.

Or all the ppl posting almost daily about their boats being gone, their bikes being stolen, or other things being taken.

Or like we witnessed on Main Street in Guerneville one night at 8:00 pm , a couple of “ homeless” guys screaming at a young family with kids.

Or my husband who was trying to go to the Versateller machine to take money out at West America Bank but two ppl were sleeping there. “

“Oh, & not to forget my lovely experience of trying to go into the lovely Safeway here, & when I got out of my car a guy sitting under a tree was shooting up.”

“…God Forbid a disease takes over our community from all the defecation in the river, & creeks. Not to forget the Auto Oil that was poured into the river, or gasoline, or other harmful chemicals. And of course the drugs & needles.”

“Right now we have utter chaos.”

“I don’t think it’s scapegoating at all, when a whole community is run over with Tweakers, who took over a 87 year old former Marines home, & stole everything he had…”

“Our community is getting worse every year with crime, Tweekers, & hard drugs. The majority of the homeless are about 60% hard drug users & criminals. Somewhere between 30 & 40 % are ppl needing & wanting help to get back on their feet. And of course you have the mentally ill. “

“And, rape is common at these homeless camps because again they don’t have to register.”
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Monte Rio / Northwood / Guerneville

AT&T telcom tower

Click HERE for 6.1MB pdf, courtesy of Rue Furch.
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Gold Ridge Resource Conservation District


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July 2017

Lost Dog in Monte Rio

pdf flier to print and share here.

How to Crate Train Your Dog (and avoid unnecessary tragedy): Click here.
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welcome to monte rio

The Board of Supervisors is still encouraging vacation rentals with inflated day & night occupancy allowances to block emergency vehicle access on dodgy narrow roads in Monte Rio and to overload septics.

If a resident wants to apply for a vacation rental exclusion zone for their road based on topography and/or public safety, the application fee is $8,400.

Occupancy for vacation rentals is being based on number of bedrooms, not capacity of the septic system/cesspool. Permit applicants are allowed to hire their own contractor to verify unit compatibility. The nearest example to my home: A two-bedroom home is permitted for 6 overnight guests and an additional 6 daytime guests (who shower after swimming in the river and soaking in the ubiquitous hot tub). That's 12 people using a 750gal. septic. The PRMD's own Well & Septic Department advises no more than 2 occupants for a 750gal. septic. Daily load on a tank this size should be no more than 300 gal.

Support sensible changes to the Vacation Rental Ordinance and PRMD enforcement!
(These concerns (and more), were brought to Efren Carrillo's attention prior to the Board of Supervisor's April 2016 vote on changes to the Vacation Rental Ordinance. Our concerns were not addressed.)

More information about the issues with the Vacation Rental Ordinance HERE.

Order your 'Welcome to Monte Rio' apparel at the link to the right.
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Thursday, March 1st, 2018


Russian River Sculpture

6ft carved wood sculpture of woman. Please contact Sonoma County Sheriff with any info. The owners and the community want her back! 
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The Next Generation of:


(Mouse over image to participate)
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toxic algae russian river

Click here for weekly reports.

Monte Rio is a town with approximately 1,058 residents and is 1.90 square miles in size.

It is considered to be lower middle class. In other words, a disproportionately large percentage of its households earn between $25,000 and $50,000 per year.

MONTE RIO CENTRAL is the Free Online Community Directory and Resource Finder for full time residents with a focus on issues that impact locals!

(The best physical bulletin boards are in the window of Bartlett's Market on Main St @ Moscow Rd. and at the Monte Rio Post Office)



Parasite originally meant ‘next to food’, but later signified sitting next to a host to get free food. Now it describes a long-term relationship between species, in which the parasite benefits and the host is harmed, although in practice the latter ranges from “deadly effects” to “some benefits”.

"Even parasites have a right to life" - PETA

Parasites of Sonoma County
Russian River Alliance
Everclean North
Guerneville trash trolls
raccoon worms

Why you shouldn't feed racoons:

Jacques Resleure
Jacques François Resleure
Click HERE to enlarge
ordinance 6148 hazardous vegetation.pdf

Vegetation Management Recommended Actions per Oct 23, 2018 Board of Supervisor's Meeting. Click HERE for pdf

Smokey the Bear
Monte Rio Volunteer Fire Department

Click on t-shirt, below, for enlargement..
monte rio t-shirt


Show your support for a Sonoma County PRMD policy change to base vacation rental day & night occupancy allowances on SEPTIC DAILY LOAD CAPACITY, NOT number of bedrooms.

Wonderland Radio Hour
Share Sonoma
(Shared Housing And Resource Exchange) offers a free Home Sharing Program for anyone living in Sonoma County.

Our program creates affordable housing, using existing housing, helps our seniors remain home safely to age in place, and helps to prevent homelessness.

SHARE facilitates secure home shares for home owners or renters with those in need of housing, who are currently stressed financially, experiencing life transitions, looking for companionship, and/or needing basic assistance to remain home safely and THRIVE!
Rio Cafe & Grill
Lightwave Cafe
5th District Supervisor
Lynda Hopkins
Lynda Hopkins

Click on photo to visit her website


William "Dutch Bill" Howard (born 1823) was a Danish seaman who jumped ship at San Francisco Bay in 1849 and started a new life as a homesteader near the source of this creek.

In the 1870s, the North Pacific Coast Railroad was built through the valley. In return for donating right-of-way to the railroad, Howard received a lifetime railway pass and got a station named after him.

efren carrillo
Pacific Wren