Now is time to work together to resolve mascot issue

What happens next? How does our community heal itself from the vast division it suffered by the Del Norte Youth Football's effort to "bring back the head"

The dust is settling from the Sept. 13 School Board meeting, when Board Policy 5135 (1998) reconfirmed the elimination of using an American Indian image or icon as the mascot for the Del Norte Warriors?

More than ever the following adage rings clear in this healing process: "Oh, Great Spirit, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference."

We as leaders of this community, being the intelligent human beings we are, have been given the task of teaching our children and youth that even if we choose to disagree with one another, we can still get along and work harmoniously to build a healthy and strong community; even coming up with a new mascot.

We all have an opinion on this issue and it's okay to disagree. Acceptance and tolerance for each another's differences is a great "people skill" to possess.

America is the melting pot of the world and is made of many races, religions and cultures. We can demonstrate to our family, children, and community that regardless of these differences we can continue to build and maintain a healthy and viable community. To be accepting and tolerant is a good thing and it shows that as intelligent human beings we can take the high road.

Let's join hands and work together to come up with an acceptable Warrior mascot that will embrace the love and respect we have for American Indian peoples and cultures. Let's look to this solution with genuine optimism to accomplish this endeavor. As stated earlier, it's okay to agree to disagree.

Just as Thumper was reminded the teaching from his dad that, "if you can't say anything nice, don't say nothing at all," we can accomplish much from practicing good manners and being polite towards one another. Let's effect the change we need. Be the change you want to see!

Sheryl Steinruck

Fort Dick

Advice on what to do about new state 'fire-protection' fee

As more than 800,000 Californians, and many of our Del Norte County residents, receive bills for a new annual "fire-protection" fee, there is certain to be anger and confusion over who is required to pay, when they should pay and how a person subject to the fee may object to paying.

For our residents the following information is provided so that you may make your decision with the most accurate information available. People receiving bills may protest the fee in writing within 30 days of receiving the notice if they feel they are being charged for more habitable structures than are actually owned.

If you are located within a fire protection district you are eligible for a $35 discount from the original $150 fee. CalFire has a website,, that outlines the fee and the procedures described above for protesting the fee. It also includes the Petition for Redetermination that CalFire requires if one chooses to protest the fee and the parameters for a protest.

The reality is the first bills have gone out to our residents and a second bill will be sent soon for the upcoming year. The advice of the Board of Supervisors is to pay the bill to avoid interest charges, and to immediately connect with the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association through a new web site ( that informs home owners and allows Californians to join together to support one another and get relief. You may also receive updates on the progress of the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association relating to the fee.

If you have difficulty finding these sites or require further assistance you may also visit the regional Council of Rural Counties web site at or you may contact the Del County office of Administration and staff will assist.

The Del Norte County Board of Supervisors has declared its opposition to the fee, has engaged advocates and partners, and will continue to work for our community in order to overturn the fee.

Michael Sullivan

County supervisor,

District 3