‘Fix the roof, remove the rot and mold, allow the Vets and the community to meet’: Letter Writer Urges County to Reopen Garberville Vet’s Hall

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Remember opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect that of Redheaded Blackbelt nor have we checked the letters for accuracy.Letter to the Editor

To whom it may concern: As a long time Green Builder and California Licensed Contractor who has lived and worked both in So Hum and Northern Humboldt for over 40 years, I wish to add my concerns that the Haynes Vet’s Hall is still closed. The County has been remiss in its property ownership duties to either repair the roof and the resulting mold damage; nor has the County allowed local volunteers to repair the mold which was caused by negligent maintenance of the County.

The Haynes Veterans Building was: BUILT BY THE VETS,





If the Garden Club of Eureka can voluntarily plant flowers on County property and if Citizen Volunteers can work in Federal and State Parks with liability waivers, the County can find some legal end run to allow willing, eager and able Veterans and community volunteers to repair the damage to their building caused by the County’s inept, inadequate and delayed maintenance.

Fix the roof, remove the rot and mold, allow the Vets and the community to meet. Don’t tear it down.

We certainly want to provide safe entrance and fixtures for the disabled, be they Vets or not. Timelines to accomplish these ADA standards may need to be stretched much as the timelines of other ADA upgrades at many other County Buildings have been stretched.

In a time of low budgets for all County projects, returning the Vets Building back to the Garberville Vets as owners saves the County the most of all options.

Honor the Vets, return the Hall to the Vets, show bold leadership, be creative and rally the local community.

I offer my services as consultant and/or advisory committee member.

Chip Tittmann, Owner
Arco Iris Woodworking, Design and Consulting
Miranda, California 95553



  • An incredible and pathetic example of Humboldt County Government in action…

    Over four years of promises, but nothing has been done!

    Do you really want to elect “Estelle the promiser” again?

    Thanks for your offer, Mr Tittmann!

  • Thank you Chip, for what you do for the very deserving vets, and the community. Go ahead, organize a work party, you are a contractor, just start working on it. If the county shows up, turn them away, make them uncomfortable to be there, send them packing. Since the precedence of non arrest has been set by the county law enforcement and AG, as well as the supervisors, to let people with 8 pounds of heroin walk away, or all the meth floating around with no arrests, certainly you have no chance of being arrested or forced to stop your good and beneficial work. Shame any deputy who would tell you to stop to instead go find the meth producers and distributors, who destroy lives and our community, or the heroin people. I am sure there would be a large number of vets, and other strong community members who could surround any people who would want you to stop. If they want to chain and lock you out, you all know how to use a cutting torch, and open her up and go to work. Have reporters there to take pictures of those govt slogs who think they run things, and publish them, so we all know who they are. When our community is safe from drugs and thieves, safe from crime, then they might have a say, but until then, begin your good work, establish a security perimeter, and de mold and repair. God speed.

  • With liberty and justice for all

    Yep our local government has failed us miserably!!!!! The only thing there interested in is robbing us. It’s time for new representation that’s for sure. Focus your brain people!!!!!

    • Here is the name and phone number of building inspector: Elizabeth Schatz, 445 7245. Call these people 8 hours a day, tell them not to bother coming to Garberville to try to stop our vets and volunteers, you will not be allowed on the property. Tell her o go check on all the illegal grows instead. Remember, your private taxes pay their salaries, they are our employees. The people are in charge of the govt, the govt is not in charge of us.

  • Who’s in charge of the Garberville “Town Square” these days? It’s turned into nothing more than a day lounge for drug dealers, druggies and the homeless.
    The new graffiti is a charming touch also.
    I know it’s nice of the squares founders to provide this space for the homeless but that’s about it’s only function now except when the Farmers market squeezes them out for half a day.

  • Thank you Chip. When Estelle is defeated, hopefully our new supervisor will be on our side and helping to fix what has been willfully neglected on purpose for years.

    There is no excuse for allowing that building to decay before our eyes. To deny our community the services it used to provide us is so painful to see.

    Go Chip, let us know how we can help.

  • Thank you chip!!!! Well said!! If the planning and building Dept can operate without being ada compliant there is no good cause not to let the vets resolve these issues themselves in time too. it’s been like 6 years since the county closed it down. The vets have amazing helpers like chip and beyond. Let the people fix this, the county is not capable clearly.

  • Ernie Branscomb

    Chip, you used logic and reason and made good sense, there must be a county ordinance against that.

    The standards for doing anything anymore is to achieve perfection. Reaching perfection is like reaching infinity, no matter how hard that you try, you will never reach it. There are now so many rules that a criminal cannot even be removed from civilized society, yet you still can’t do anything constructive.

    I don’t want to be any part of a committee to talk about it, but I would want be part of any “hands-on” construction. As I am sure that you know, the roof was a poorly designed system from the very beginning. It is a flat roof with many openings for vents and HVAC ducting. The roof membrane was destined to fail.

    Good luck with your endeavor! We will probably be “talking” about this for years.

  • Doesn’t the vets building have an asbestos problem to deal with ?

  • Sometimes it’s easier to ask for forgiveness than to get permission.

  • Kevin Arnoul Electric

    Thanks Chip Good Luck. I also would volunteer my services for hands on construction along with Ernie. I’m sure I could get electrical supply houses to donate fixtures etc. You can not get into the building dept up north in Eureka if your ADA. You have to request special assistance and they bring you in some back door. How about the waste of money paying rent in Redway instead of ADA compliant county buildings. Our library going away is next.

  • Veterans friend

    The county had a legal obligation to maintain the Veterans Hall. There was (may still be) a contract. The local veterans should be suing the county for the neglect and loss of use of the hall.

  • The heads of the County Building&Planning Dept need to be gutted! The upcoming Safe Homes Act will levy code fines on every unpermitted home/outbuilding that they are spying on with their satellite. How dare them fine others when they don’t even try to get their own buildings up to code.
    It’s definitely time for constructive Civil Disobedience! The Vets Hall is the perfect place to make a start. Good for Chip!! Good for Ernie! Good for Kevin! I’ll be there too, for sure!

  • Yes, and….. What is especially galling is that while the So Hum Vets Hall has been closed, the one in Eureka was remodeled to the highest standards possible, literally with gold adornments in front. Not saying they don’t deserve it, but what an example of inequity. Eureka Vets good (‘worthy’). Garberville Vets bad (‘old hippie, Vietnam era, disrespectful, peacenik, long-hairs!’).

  • ‘Let’s take back our Veterans Hall, and let’s have a local courthouse again, too. The sooner the better. And local folks taking charge is how it should be. As the pandemic continues, staying home is important. Returning services to outlying areas(that’s us SoHum) means not having to travel to Eureka to deal with local issues. And without the Veterans Hall we have no venue for various community meetings other than the Mateel; not always the ideal or available choice. Maybe it’s time to see exactly where our candidates for Supervisor stand on this.

  • Chip you can count on me as volunteer labor, coffee maker, Baker, coordination and anything else I can help with to repair our Vet’s Hall. [email protected]
    Let’s get the ball rolling to get the damaged area temp coverings before it rains on it again! And plan to remove and replace it in the next dry season! Hoist the colors!

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