Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Eco News does story on Marks for Harbor Commissioner.

Great article by Eco News. I am humbled by their portrayal of me.

Richard may not be what you think of when you picture an environmentalist. For nearly 30 years, Richard was a heavy equipment operator at the Samoa Pulp Mill. He was also a union organizer for the Association of Western Pulp and Paper Workers and President of Local 49. But he is also a deep lover of Humboldt Bay and has been one of its most important champions. Richard is a Kin to the Earth.
After working for years next to Humboldt Bay at the mill, Richard shifted to working on behalf of the Bay. First elected to the Humboldt Bay Harbor, Recreation, and Conservation District in 2009, Richard now serves as Chairman of the Board. In his work on behalf of the Harbor District, Richard safeguards the bay. Most notably, Richard was instrumental in the cleanup of his former place of employment.
First, the Harbor District purchased the mill site and three million gallons of caustic liquors stored onsite. The liquors, once used to break down wood chips into pulp, were stored in old, rusting tanks—so rusty that rainwater leaked in, slowly filling up the containers until they were ready to burst. The threat was so real that once the EPA saw the problem, they made cleanup of the site its top priority. With overflowing, corroding tanks, time was of the essence. Next, the Harbor District coordinated a massive cleanup with the EPA—700 trucks, each hauling 2,500 gallons, carried away the hazardous chemicals to be safely reused by another pulp plant in Longview, Washington. Richard takes no greater pride than knowing that the harbor is healthy.
According to Jennifer Kalt of Humboldt Baykeeper, “the acquisition of the former pulp mill was a risky proposition. But Richard was so determined that he was clearly not going to take no for an answer, and the District bravely plowed ahead where no other government agency dared to tread.”
The Harbor District is working on additional cleanups of contaminated soil and debris and rehabilitating old mill buildings for a modern business park. On top of the renovated buildings is a massive solar array—the largest in the county—able to power 750 kilowatts. Already 18 businesses have taken up residence in the old mill, helping to generate income for the Harbor District. Once near bankruptcy, Richard and company have brought the District back to financial solvency. “Cleaning up the former pulp mill site is one of the Harbor District’s greatest achievements,” said Surfrider Foundation’s Jennifer Savage. “But it’s only one of a long list of ways in which Richard made the Harbor District better.”
Richard just went through a tough reelection fight but emerged with a decisive victory, taking home some 62 percent of the vote. (This was especially comforting, as Richard’s opponent ran against the Harbor District’s cleanup work.) Richard put a lot of miles in, knocking on doors in the past election. By his count, he totaled over 3,000 doors. And he did it in fashion, rocking pink and robin’s egg blue sneakers.
Reflective of his dual nature—both salt of the earth union organizer and beloved environmentalist—Richard’s campaign endorsements were a study in contrasts. Both Mike Wilson (a bleeding heart liberal, in my words) and Greg Dale (a “conservative Republican,” in his words) sing Richard’s praises.
Says Dale, “Richard Marks is one of the best public servants I’ve ever had the pleasure of interacting with.  He not only listens to all sides of an issue, from all parties, he follows up by educating himself and others on the issue before making a decision. His genuine good will, honesty, professionalism and pleasant demeanor come through in all circumstances and through his influence, makes us all better humans. I’m proud to call him a mentor and friend.”

When Richard isn’t saving the bay, he’s probably playing (or writing about) softball. Richard is the President of the Mad River Softball Association. He even maintains a blog—where he writes about the local leagues (and local politics, food reviews, rankings of worst bands, and a random smattering of other things that
strike his fancy).

Sunday, December 09, 2018

Fastest Sea Level Rise on west coast happening on Samoa Peninsula!

Students from Humboldt States Environmental Science Department did a presentation on Sea Level rise at the Samoa Peninsula Fire Hall on Saturday December 9th in Fairhaven. They used best available science to come to their conclusions. Between Global warming and the affects of our local subduction-zone issues, the Samoa Peninsula water table is rising 4.73 milliliters a year or for you old timers like me, .186 inches a year. That is the fastest sea level rise rate on the entire west coast! This will cause havoc to ground water tables and lead to septic tank failures that are imminent in Fairhaven and will cause pollution to our bay.

Currently there are 181 parcels in the town of Fairhaven and 63 homes. There are 180 residents living at about 10 ft above sea level. The Wiyot tribe used to occupy this area until the property was bought by George Fay in 1875. The unincorporated town was formerly named Rolph after California Governor James Rolph.  The town had more than 500 timber industry jobs in its past doing plywood and pulp production. There are currently about 100 jobs providing newsprint, soil and other niche businesses.

A newly formed Community Service District for the Peninsula will provide water services, delivery of power, Sewage service and a Parks and Recreation department. Currently the Samoa Peninsula Fire District is looking for financing a creation of a emergency tsunami evacuation Berm in Fairhaven for the safety of the residents and the current workers.

Solutions to issues to shoreline loss could be soil replenishment through dredge spoils if the correct sand grain size matches up with the current habitat. This would have to be a long term goal as permitting and actual dredging seems onerous all around the bay. Other thoughts are retreating and letting nature take the lead. Nourish replenishment included with new sand to form a living shoreline was brought up, as well as wooden fences designs to capture sand during wind storm events. HSU is also hoping to do more studies for solutions in the future.

Hope you found this information useful.

Thursday, November 15, 2018

Thank you Humboldt County!

I have been so fortunate to have had the endorsement of our highest legislative representative’s, Congressman Jared Huffman, Senator Mike McGuire and Assemblyman Jim Wood.  Thanks also to Humboldt County Supervisors Mike Wilson and Virginia Bass and Supervisor elect Steve Madrone.

To my button maker and friend Auditor Controller Karen Paz Dominguez, “Ok, we have enough buttons now!” 

Much gratitude to current Eureka Mayor Frank Jager and other conservative community elected members that endorsed me for my record and our friendships that transcend political party politics.

Thanks to former Eureka Mayor Peter LaVallee and congratulations to incoming Eureka Mayor Susan Seaman and Councilpersons Natalie Arroyo, Kim Bergel and Leslie Castellano. And thanks to Councilperson Austin Allison. I much appreciated your support.

I have been so blessed to have the continued support of my fellow Harbor Commissioners Pat Higgins, Greg Dale and Stephen Kullman. Keep doing what you do for the Harbor.

Thank you to my former fellow directors on the Samoa Peninsula Fire District, Chief Dale Unea, Troy Nicolini, Hal Grotke and Lia Stoffers for their support and for keeping the Samoa Peninsula safe!

A shout out to volunteers Nick Thomas, Bill Cook, Cody Johns, Crescent City Councilman Alex Fallman, Ciara Emery and  Sandy Farrell for canvassing the streets of Eureka with me to get the message out about our campaign.  And thanks to Arcata City Councilman Brett Watson for the logistic support that was invaluable.

For the wonderful “Fish Fry by the Sea” event, thank you to former 1st Division Harbor Commissioner Aaron Newman, Leroy Zerlang and the Dale families and friends. People are still talking about the great food!

I can’t say enough about the former elected officeholders that endorsed my campaign, Senator Wesley Chesbro, State Assembly member Patty Berg, Fourth District Supervisor Bonnie Neely, Third District Supervisors Julie Fulkerson and John Woolley, Eureka City Councilpersons Linda Adkin and Larry Glass and Arcata City Councilperson Alex Stillman. 

Thanks to the Humboldt County Democratic Central Committee, Humboldt Progressive Democrats, North Coast People Alliance, Green Party of Humboldt County, Humboldt State College Democrats, and the Sierra club.

To my union brothers and sisters who helped finance and make my election viable, I am truly grateful to Humboldt/ Del Norte Central Labor Council, Building and Trades Council, Operating Engineers local 3, United Brotherhood of Carpenters 751, International  Brotherhood of  Electrical Workers 551, American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) 1684, The International Association of Heat and Frost Insulators & Allied Workers local 16, the Laborers International Union of North America and the many other labor organizations.  “United we Bargain, Divided we beg!”

To my ever patient lifelong partner Robin, I love you and can’t begin to say how much I appreciate you.

Thank you to my opponent Marian Brady for running a fair campaign. We share many of the same visions for harbor growth, but just respectfully disagree how to get there.

Humboldt County, It has been an honor to represent the 4th Division for the last nine years and I am looking forward to continued success for the future.  

If anybody out there has some spare change to donate to my campaign debt, please sent to Marks for Harbor Commissioner 2018 at PO Box 184 Samoa, Ca 95564 or go to my website at It will be much appreciated. 

Friday, November 02, 2018

Door knockers welcomed. Marks for Harbor Commissioner.

If you have never had the opportunity to knock doors for a political campaign in this area, here is your chance. I will be out and about in the 4th Division/District and I will set you up with partners, (might even be me) at 1pm tomorrow, Saturday November 3rd. Should only take a few hours. Either message me on facebook or text me at 707-496-9043. Only a few days to go!

Friday, October 26, 2018

Huffman, McGuire and Wood Endorse Richard Marks for Harbor District

Eureka, CA –Congressman Jared Huffman, State Senator Mike McGuire and Assemblyman Jim Wood have endorsed Richard Marks’ re-election to the Humboldt Bay Harbor, Recreation, and Conservation District, Division 4.

“I am proud to receive the endorsements of our top three legislative leaders for the North Coast,” said Marks. “I am grateful for their partnerships in working with the Harbor District on the Pulp Mill clean up, keeping our shipping channels dredged and supporting our fishermen and oyster growers. They have been strong voices advocating for our Humboldt Bay community.”

Friday, October 19, 2018

Hey Eureka! You are OK! Thank you!

I was walking and knocking doors is Eureka today and I was thinking about all of the campaigns I have have canvassed in Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Utah and all over California. I knocked on a person's door today and had a pleasant conversation and when I was leaving they said, "Come back again when it is not election season!" I have probably knocked more doors in Eureka and surrounding areas than any other person besides a mail delivery person. There is one common thread to all of the people, Eureka people are courteous and welcoming! I think all of the campaigns in the Eureka area this election cycle see the same thing. Eureka is a great place with positive people! So don't get discouraged with people giving the town a bad rap, Eureka is not all that bad!

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Nice LTE from Jack Crider. Many thanks.

Jack and Shawn Crider

True leadership is rare these days as it takes time, dedication and the ability to listen, learn and follow your heart to do the right thing. Richard Marks is that kind of leader and Humboldt Bay and Humboldt County is very lucky to have him.
I’ve been port director for three ports over a span of 25 years, two in Oregon and Humboldt Bay Harbor District. I worked directly under more than 20 elected port commissioners.
Commissioner Marks is a great mentor who provided me with guidance and was always available. Richard attended every meeting and event. He was dedicated to the weekly administrative duties, such as reviewing information and contracts. His availability was critical to the success of the operation and greatly appreciated by all of Humboldt Bay’s staff.
Commissioner Richard Marks’ advice on local politics was critical to me and his ability to remain calm under pressure, listen and address his constituents was always impressive. Richard’s demonstrated his leadership skills many times during difficult meetings and had the ability to gain consensus and provide guidance to staff.
Cleanup of the Samoa Pulp Mill and the zoning changes that allowed for all the new businesses and jobs on the peninsula would not have happened without Richard’s leadership.
For the future of Humboldt Bay, Humboldt County and the harbor district, please vote for Richard Marks, he is one of the best port commissioners I’ve ever worked for.
Jack Crider, Former Executive Director of the Humboldt Bay Harbor, Recreation and Conservation District