Morning Glory Dairy fight continues

Those eager to help support Morning Glory Dairy as it vies for the business from the two local state prisons — the California Correctional Center and High Desert State Prison — are not done fighting yet.

Although they received news CCC’s waiver application to receive milk and eggs from Morning Glory rather than CALPIA, the state’s prison industry, was again denied last week, Morning Glory and various elected officials are moving forward to ensure the local industry is not left behind.

“The answer, as of now, is they’re taking the milk and eggs,” Morning Glory owner Josh McKernan told the Lassen County Board of Supervisors Tuesday, Jan. 22.

The waiver allowing Morning Glory to provide milk to CCC is up Jan. 31, unless they provide another 30-day waiver at the last minute, McKernan said. HDSP’s waiver for milk is good through the year.

The absence of the waivers breaks a 55-year long collaboration between the dairy and the local prisons; which will eventually negatively impact the price of goods supplied to local schools and organizations and the number of those employed by the dairy, McKernan has said. He said the dairy has already let a few employees go.

Getting answers from CALPIA and CDCR has proved a difficult task, though. Supervisor David Teeter, Morning Glory Dairy and even questions posed by the Lassen County Times regarding an unorthodox Christmas Eve meeting and when this decision was made and if it happened in a public meeting, in accordance with the organization’s regulations, remain unanswered.

Left with few options, a caravan of Morning Glory supporters were making the trek to CALPIA’s board meeting Friday, Jan. 25 in Folsom to speak during public comment.

“There’s no longer a need to be quiet about this,” Teeter said during the supervisors meeting. “It’s CDCR, CALPIA and the state of California taking out one of our local private businesses. And no amount of government jobs that they can offer us in return are worth the 10 private sector jobs that we lose.”

During the public comment at Friday’s meeting, the group was planning on asking for the item to be agendized at a future meeting, as well as providing the CALPIA board members with a pack of documents including letters supporting Morning Glory.

The supervisors also directed County Counsel Bob Burns to ask the state Attorney General’s opinion on whether CALPIA was violating it’s own regulations. The board also asked if the District Attorney could also ask for the Attorney General’s opinion.

“We need to just keep making it uncomfortable,” Teeter added.