MAY 2023


Happy Spring, and welcome to the first edition of my Supervisor newsletter! These first few months have been busy, challenging, and very rewarding. I am grateful to be doing the work as your District 3 Supervisor. My goals for this newsletter are (1) to provide a few highlights of current tasks and projects; (2) to kick off a “snapshot series” that will feature the work of a different county department in each edition; and (3) to offer a few ways to stay connected and get access to community and countywide information. So, let’s dive in!


YES, it was a snow year for our highest elevations!

I visited Angwin, Deer Park, and other hillside neighborhoods several times during and after the dramatic rain and snow storms. The snow had a devastating effect in these communities, breaking branches and causing trees to fall over roads, yards, and sometimes structures. Residents, volunteer firefighters, and county staff have been working on clean-up, and I’ve been in conversation with all those groups on how the county can provide support. Here’s a helpful FAQ from Napa County Fire staff with info on the county-wide chipping program, and also on cost-sharing opportunities to help residents pay for defensible space work.


When things dried out this spring, I spent an afternoon with staff of Napa Firewise and Napa County Fire, visiting different sites upvalley where crews are reducing fire risk by clearing vegetation and creating defensible space.

Also, Firewise submitted applications for three different state and federal grants, and I was happy to provide letters of support. If awarded, these funds will support critical vegetation management work in the hills west of Yountville, and also northeast of Calistoga along Hwy 29. The work will help build long-term fire resilience for our hillsides and ridgelines.


The County’s Office of Emergency Services (OES) and County Executive Office (CEO) are teaming up to host two Emergency Preparedness and Resource Fairs in May:

In Napa: Friday, May 12,

4-7pm, at the Napa County Admin Building Parking Lot, 1195 Third Street, Napa

In St. Helena: Friday, May 19, 4-7pm, at the Napa Valley College Upper Valley Campus, 1088 College Avenue, St. Helena

(This is the first time we will have an up-valley resource fair - thanks to OES/CEO for coming north!)

Learn more about the events here.


Supervisor Ryan Gregory and I traveled to Washington DC, where we met with several federal agencies (including FEMA, HUD and the FCC). We talked with them about Napa County's needs, including broadband; post-disaster support and climate resilience for residents, grape growers and winemakers; and housing and mental health services.


Photo credit: Linda Williamson

Residents in the city of Calistoga recently voted on Measure E, which aimed to finance the city's purchase of the fairgrounds through a tax on residents and businesses. While the measure did not pass, I know from many visits and conversations with the community that there is still strong and broad-based support for the city to buy the fairgrounds. I look forward to working with the city to explore and discuss other ways for Calistoga to purchase the property.

Pieces of the Puzzle: A snapshot of the Department of Housing and Homeless Services

As part of our onboarding process, Supervisor Joelle Gallagher and I have met with all Napa County government department heads, learning about the clients they serve, how they measure their success, and the challenges they face. I am impressed with the many dedicated county workers I’ve met in this process! Over the months ahead, I'll share a bit from each department.

I’ll start things off with some information about the Department of Housing & Homeless Services (DHHS). Jennifer Palmer (at center in the photo) heads the department; she and her team, working with staff in each of our cities and towns, focus on three major areas: Homeless Services, Farmworker Housing, and Affordable Housing Loan programs. 

First, in the Homeless Services program, DHHS serves hundreds of people in our community, in several different ways, including (a) three emergency shelters (including one for families); (b) a day center, providing medical services, laundry, and other support; and (c) a Coordinated Entry System that has helped people to get back into housing and develop skills to stay housed. The Homeless Services program team reached a milestone this month: together with their partners at the City of Napa, they opened Valley Lodge, a converted motel that will provide 54 units of permanent supportive housing. Another similar project will open up this fall. 

Second, HHS oversees three 60-bed Farmworker Centers in the valley. The Centers are funded through a unique public-private partnership, with every grape grower in Napa County contributing funds for the Centers through a per-acre annual assessment. Together with nightly rent paid by the lodgers, the Centers offer lodging and three meals a day to 380 different lodgers throughout the year. Staff also works with community partners who bring social and health services, and now ESL training, onsite.

Third, HHS’ Affordable Housing Loan Portfolio includes multiple loan and grant programs that provide different ways to help low-income residents find housing, including down payment assistance for local workers, loans specifically for residents in multi-family housing, and most recently, support for residents who want to build and rent out an Accessory Dwelling Unit (ADU). You can learn more about the program here.

The work of DHHS is critical in solving housing challenges for the neediest in our community. We are so fortunate to have Jennifer, her team, and their local nonprofit partners working hard to improve access to housing in our county. (Next newsletter’s featured department: Health and Human Services Agency (HHSA))

Ways to Connect and Find Information

That's it for this edition - thank you for reading! If you have a question or an idea of a topic you'd like to read about here, please email me at . You can also get in touch by emailing Leah, my District Aide, at

To see my weekly updates, please follow my Supervisor Anne Cottrell Facebook page and @supervisorannecottrell on Instagram. The County’s website and Facebook page are also good sources of information.

Thanks again. I look forward to serving and collaborating with you!

Anne Cottrell

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