Two Sunday photo-op pet events slated: Nov. 19 in Ventura and Dec. 3 in Ojai

Pet owners, don’t miss your chance for a uniquely fun and wonderful holiday memory. On two upcoming Sundays, the Humane Society of Ventura County will present its annual Santa Paws holiday photo shoot.

Bring your critters out to meet, sit and stay for a moment with Santa Paws, and pose for some truly adorable holiday pictures!

On Sunday, Nov. 19, the Ventura Beach Marriott will host the popular event, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Two weeks later, on Sunday, Dec. 3, the HSVC Shelter will host a second Santa Paws pet photo shoot, also from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. The shelter event will additionally feature a bake sale and marketplace, where you can get some holiday shopping done while you wait, from the many local vendors who’ll be on hand selling quality goods. All proceeds from these events benefit the animals of the nonprofit HSVC.

Adults and children are welcome to pose in their pets’ photos – with or without Santa. The shelter will have many festive pet costumes to doll up your pets if you are in the mood. In addition to cats and dogs, pocket pets, reptiles, rabbits and birds are all welcome!

Holiday photo shoot packages start at $30 and include five to 10 images. For a larger donation, you also will have access to some wonderful HSVC keepsakes, including a 2018 HSVC calendar. All images will be provided on-site on USB flash drives.

For over 30 years, this event has been providing high-quality holiday family portraits for county residents and beyond. “Having helped with Santa Paws since 1990, I can tell you this is one very fun event – and it’s especially fun for us to see the families grow through the years,” said Greg Cooper, HSVC Director of Community Outreach and official photographer for the event.

Thanks to Chuck Bowman for once again providing his services as the best Santa in town!

For more information, contact Cooper at GregC@HSVC.org or 805-646-6505, ext. 112.

 


 

District Attorney Gregory D. Totten announced today that David Joseph Wirsing (DOB 10/15/71), of Ventura, was sentenced to serve seven months in jail and placed on formal probation for three years for his role in causing a 2014 explosion at Santa Clara Waste Water Company (“SCWWC”). Wirsing was the former transportation manager for SCWWC. The case was jointly prosecuted by the Ventura County District Attorney’s Office and the California Attorney General’s Office.

On November 18, 2014, an explosion occurred at the SCWWC facility located at 815 Mission Rock Road in Santa Paula. Numerous employees as well as first responders were injured either by the initial explosion or by inhaling a toxic cloud of chlorine gas generated by the illegal disposal of hazardous chemicals that were present on site. In July 2014, Wirsing and other SCWWC employees negotiated a lease for an off-site storage yard located near Palm Avenue in Santa Paula. Wirsing was involved in a criminal conspiracy to impede inspections by Ventura County Environmental Health officials through arranging for the hazardous chemicals to be moved to the off-site storage yard before inspections occurred.

In addition to the jail sentence, Wirsing was ordered to pay victim restitution in an amount to be determined by the Court. Under the terms of his formal grant of probation, Wirsing is prohibited from employment in any capacity involving the transportation of hazardous waste.

 

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In observance of Thanksgiving Day, the employees of Santa Clara Valley Disposal are taking the day off on Thursday, Nov. 23. As a result, Fillmore residential customers will have their trash, recyclables and green waste collected on Saturday, Nov. 25, one day later than usual.

The regular Friday schedule will resume the following week.

For more information, call 647-1414.

 


 
VCTC joins nine other transit providers in countywide Veterans Day promotion

The Ventura County Transportation Commission (VCTC) will provide free rides to U.S. military veterans on its VCTC Intercity Transit bus service on Friday, Nov. 10 and Saturday, Nov. 11. Part of a countywide effort to honor local veterans on Veterans Day, VCTC joins Camarillo Area Transit, the County of Ventura, Gold Coast Transit, Moorpark City Transit, Ojai Trolley, Simi Valley Transit, Thousand Oaks Transit and Valley Express in offering two days of free rides.

“This our way of saying thank you to the thousands of men and women living in Ventura County who have served our country in the armed forces,” said VCTC Executive Director Darren Kettle. “VCTC is honored to welcome these local heroes on board our buses on Veterans Day and every day.”

To qualify for a free ride, veterans may simply show their valid Veterans Identification to the bus driver upon boarding any participating fixed-route bus service. Valid IDs include U.S. Military ID, CAC, VA Card, Veterans designation on a California driver’s license, DD214 and Retired Military ID.

Free rides are also available on the Camarillo Area Transit, CONNECT Intercity, Moorpark Transit, Simi Valley Transit, Thousand Oaks Transit and Valley Express dial-a-ride programs.

Please note that Moorpark Transit and CONNECT Intercity do not operate on Saturdays.

For more information visit www.goventura.org or call (800) 438-1112.

About the Ventura County Transportation Commission
The Ventura County Transportation Commission is the regional transportation planning agency committed to keeping Ventura County moving. Program information is available at goventura.org.

 


 
L-R Rotary members travel. Dave Andersen visited the Rotary Club of Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan and Rev. George Golden visited The Rotary Club of Eddoret, Kenya Africa. Each brought back banners from those Clubs.
L-R Rotary members travel. Dave Andersen visited the Rotary Club of Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan and Rev. George Golden visited The Rotary Club of Eddoret, Kenya Africa. Each brought back banners from those Clubs.
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Pictured is Rotary President Dave Wareham with guest speaker Doug Leeper. Doug is Director of Resource Management Agency Code Compliance Division in Ventura County. They check everything from gas pumps at stations, scales at grocery stores, to properties that pose a danger to others. Photo courtesy Martha Richardson.
Pictured is Rotary President Dave Wareham with guest speaker Doug Leeper. Doug is Director of Resource Management Agency Code Compliance Division in Ventura County. They check everything from gas pumps at stations, scales at grocery stores, to properties that pose a danger to others. Photo courtesy Martha Richardson.
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Pictured left to right are some of who participated in helping with the Civic Pride Committee Projects Karen Bagley, Cindy Klittich, Grace Mitchell, Michael Mitchell, Justin Fairall, Linda Nunes and grandson, Jacob Randall.
Pictured left to right are some of who participated in helping with the Civic Pride Committee Projects Karen Bagley, Cindy Klittich, Grace Mitchell, Michael Mitchell, Justin Fairall, Linda Nunes and grandson, Jacob Randall.
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(l-r) Karen Bagley and Annette Ross.
(l-r) Karen Bagley and Annette Ross.
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Vision 2020, Civic Pride Committee, with their Statement of Vision being: “Foster a thriving small town atmosphere in which people give their time and talents for the good of the community.” accomplished two large projects on Saturday, October 28. Committee members, Annette Ross, Karen Bagley, Cindy Klittich, and Linda Nunes welcomed hard workers, Julie and Justin Fairall, Grace and Michael Mitchell from 4 H groups and James Nunes, who regularly provides muscle and engineering of drip systems for our efforts. We pruned and divided Cape Balsam succulents and Sticks on Fire Euphorbias in three planters within the westside parking lot behind the police station. These planters had been designed and planted in September, 2014 and maintained by our group.

Next we planted succulents at 429 Central and pruned a Ficus tree for Kraft & Sons Computer Store.

Civic Pride meets on the third Wednesday of each month in City Hall at 1:30 pm and we welcome all who are interested in beautifying our community and producing an annual Flower Show to attend.

 

Happy Halloween everyone! I’m going to give you some ideas for Halloween. If you want some ghosts, get a paper or big paper poster (If you want a big ghost), and draw a ghost any size you want. Then cut it out and now, you’ve got a ghost. Then if you want anything like that like skeletons, zombies, and ghouls, do the same thing. Now pumpkin banners. You’ll need string, paper that’s orange and green, glue, and scissors. Cut a pumpkin out with the orange paper, and a stem with green paper. Glue them together and draw little designs on the pumpkin. Glue pumpkins to the string and now you have a banner. Halloween can be scary sometimes but fun! Costumes can be fun too! I hope you have a great Halloween!
- Heather Furness, Gazette Cub Reporter

 

Halloween season is in full swing in Fillmore! A creepy holiday light and music show is on display at 408 Edgewood in The Bridges every night at 7:00, 7:30 and 8:00pm. The display includes music and visuals from Michael Jackson’s Thriller, Ghostbusters and The Nightmare Before Christmas. Cruella de Vil and Capt. Hook also join the mayhem, along with music from all your favorite haunts, including songs from Disney’s haunted mansion. This year’s show has 10 creepy RGB Spiders, 2 Mega Spiders, Meg Spinners, Halloween circles, Giant Pixel Web, and 3 ghosts. You can tune into 97.7 FM on your car radio to listen to the frightfully familiar music. Homeowner Ron Howard went all out to make sure this Halloween is Spooktacular! Ghosts and goblins welcomed.

 
Pictured (l-r) Dulce Zellmer, Martin Guerrero, Evan Zellmer, Miss Fillmore Sara Uridel and Ari Larson cut the ribbon to welcome Fillmore Saw to the community. Photo courtesy Ari Larson.
Pictured (l-r) Dulce Zellmer, Martin Guerrero, Evan Zellmer, Miss Fillmore Sara Uridel and Ari Larson cut the ribbon to welcome Fillmore Saw to the community. Photo courtesy Ari Larson.
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The community welcomed Fillmore Saw with a ribbon-cutting ceremony on September 18, 2017. On hand were Miss Fillmore 2017 Sara Uridel and Fillmore Chamber of Commerce board directors Ari Larson and Martin Guerrero. Evan and Dulce Zellmer offer a variety of saws depending on your needs and also service lawn mowers. Fillmore Saw is located inside Fillmore Rental on Highway 126 (955 W. Ventura St. Rm B). For questions contact Evan Zellmer at 805.827.5130.

 
Donations of toys, food, diapers and toiletries also sought for Ventura County charities

How do we cope with the good and bad things we face in life? Everyone must overcome hardships like illness, natural disasters, job loss and the deaths of loved ones.

There are lessons to be learned about recovering and thriving after challenging experiences. At this time of year when people give thanks, Community Memorial Health System is sharing personal and inspiring stories that help teach others how to build resilience, strength and hope during trying times.

“Stories of Life’s Joys and Challenges: A Thanksgiving Program” is a free Ethics in Healthcare event and part of Community Memorial Health System’s 2017 Speaker Series. The program starts at 5:30 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 16, at the Museum of Ventura County, 100 E. Main St. in Ventura. James Hornstein, M.D., CMHS Bioethics Committee Chair, will serve as moderator.

Attendees are encouraged to bring donations of toys, food, diapers and toiletries for three charity efforts: Ventura County’s FOOD Share food bank; Gabriel’s House, a transitional support organization for women and children; and the Ventura County Fire Department’s Spark of Love toy drive, which collects unwrapped toys for needy local children.

There will be raffles for prizes throughout the evening program, and those who make donations will receive reusable tote bags.

Registration is free but reservations are required. To secure reservations, please visit www.cmhshealth.org/rsvp or call Brown Paper Tickets at 800-838-3006. Program sponsors are KVTA radio, the Accountable Care Alliance of Ventura, SCAN and Ventura Care Partners Apc.

Community Memorial Health System is a not-for-profit health system, which is comprised of Community Memorial Hospital, Ojai Valley Community Hospital, along with the Centers for Family Health serving various communities within and located in Ventura County, California.

 
Program helps offset college costs to preserve GI Bill benefits for university tuition

In an effort to improve the college-going rate among veterans and active duty military in Ventura County, the Ventura College Foundation is helping Ventura College students who are U.S. veteran and U.S. active duty military offset the cost of tuition through the William and Helen Scarpino Veterans Promise Program, a four-year pilot program funded by donors who cover the first-year costs of enrollment fees for qualifying students, allowing these students to reserve their GI Bill for university tuition.

“The William and Helen Scarpino Veterans Promise Program allows us to better assist active duty military and veterans with honorable discharges, to transition into civilian life by helping them further their education and successfully pursue their next career,” said Anne King, Ventura College Foundation executive director.

For the 2017/2018 academic year, the William and Helen Scarpino Veterans Promise Program will award approximately $1,200 to 16 veterans. Applications are accepted from Oct. 1 to 31, and awards will be distributed in January 2018.

To be eligible, students must be U.S. active duty or U.S. veteran (includes U.S. National Guard), a first-time Ventura College student, honorably discharged (if U.S. Veteran) and not currently using a GI Bill. Students must commit to attend Ventura College in both Fall 2017 and Spring 2018 semesters and have completed the FAFSA for the 2017/2018 academic year. Students must maintain a minimum 2.0 GPA and successfully complete at least 70 percent of the classes the student originally registered for.

Designed to eliminate economic barriers to higher education, the Promise grant encourages students to further their education and reach their academic goals. According to Foundation staff, 90 percent of Promise students persist to the second semester at Ventura College compared to 70 percent of their non-Promise counterparts. Promise students enjoy greater retention by taking 25 percent more units than non-Promise counterparts and seeking services available to them on campus, including the Foundation’s Lending Library and Scholarship Program.

In addition, the Veterans Resource Center at Ventura College offers a supportive environment and a welcoming campus culture for all veteran students, along with their dependents, and is available to help provide the support needed by veteran students to reach their educational goals.

Established in 1983, the Ventura College Foundation provides financial support to the students and the programs of Ventura College to facilitate student success and grow the impact and legacy of Ventura College as a vital community asset. The Foundation also hosts the Ventura College Foundation Marketplace, an outdoor shopping experience held every weekend on the Ventura College campus east parking lot. For more information, contact Anne King at (805) 289-6160 or aking@vcccd.edu, or visit www.venturacollege.edu/foundation.

 

Ventura County Arts Council in Partnership with the Fillmore Library is pleased to announce “The First Time” Poetry Contest. The contest is for adults and runs through October 31, 2017. One lucky poet will receive a $50.00 Visa gift card!

There will be a special Poetry Workshop at the Library Saturday, Oct. 21, 2017 from 1 p.m to 2:30 p.m. Fernando Albert Salinas will assist those interested in improving their poetry writing skills. Mr. Salinas currently serves on the VCAC Board and is a local county poet and performer. His writing has appeared in multiple publications including ASKW, Chaparral Journeys and The Aviator.

Poetry submissions may be brought or sent to the Fillmore Library 502 Second Street, Fillmore CA. 93015. Please contact Cathy Krushell at 805.524.3355 for further information.

 
Fillmore Chamber of Commerce welcomed the Bike HUB by hosting a ribbon cutting ceremony. Pictured above are Ralph Jimenez (Pres. Fillmore Chamber), Jaime Ambriz (Bike HUB Project Mgr.), Ari Larson (Fillmore Chamber Board Dir.), Martha Espinoza, Michael Espinoza, Eric Maynard, Timothy Cox, Danny Meraz, Jena Branstetter (Bike HUB Board Secretary),Yvonne Adan (Bike HUB Board of Directors), John Vargas, Martin Gonzalez, Aaron Sandberg, Dulce Cox, Nathan Cox,Timmy Cox and Joshua Cox. Photo courtesy Ron Parker.
Fillmore Chamber of Commerce welcomed the Bike HUB by hosting a ribbon cutting ceremony. Pictured above are Ralph Jimenez (Pres. Fillmore Chamber), Jaime Ambriz (Bike HUB Project Mgr.), Ari Larson (Fillmore Chamber Board Dir.), Martha Espinoza, Michael Espinoza, Eric Maynard, Timothy Cox, Danny Meraz, Jena Branstetter (Bike HUB Board Secretary),Yvonne Adan (Bike HUB Board of Directors), John Vargas, Martin Gonzalez, Aaron Sandberg, Dulce Cox, Nathan Cox,Timmy Cox and Joshua Cox. Photo courtesy Ron Parker.
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Promoting exercise and fun, Bike HUB (a mobile unit) has a mission to foster a safe, healthy community through bicycle-centered education, empowerment and advocacy in Ventura County. They are now in Fillmore. On Sunday, September 2, 2017 they had a bike ride and swim event that included a ribbon-cutting by the Fillmore Chamber of Commerce. For information please contact Jaime Ambriz 805.421.9182 or Email: jambriz@bikeventura.org.

 
Fillmore Rotary Club hosted Carol Chapman, Ventura County Library Adult Literacy Program Manager, who spoke on the different styles of teaching adults to read and how this free program has changed people’s lives. Information on this free service can be obtained at any VC library. Pictured is Rotary member Dave Wareham presenting Carol with a Rotary mug as a thank you. Photo courtesy Martha Richardson.
Fillmore Rotary Club hosted Carol Chapman, Ventura County Library Adult Literacy Program Manager, who spoke on the different styles of teaching adults to read and how this free program has changed people’s lives. Information on this free service can be obtained at any VC library. Pictured is Rotary member Dave Wareham presenting Carol with a Rotary mug as a thank you. Photo courtesy Martha Richardson.
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St. Francis Dam photo submitted by Ari Larson.
St. Francis Dam photo submitted by Ari Larson.
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On Oct. 5, 2017, U.S. Senators Kamala D. Harris and Dianne Feinstein (both D-CA) introduced the St. Francis Dam Disaster National Memorial Act, legislation which would establish a national memorial to honor the lives of the 1928 St. Francis Dam disaster that claimed the lives of 431 Californians. The Dam disaster was California’s second largest tragedy in terms of lives lost.

“We should not forget the hundreds of lives lost during one of the worst tragedies in California’s history,” said Senator Harris. “And while this monument will serve as a reminder of the consequences of a failure of infrastructure, it offers a lesson going forward.”

“It’s been almost 90 years since the catastrophic breach of St. Francis Dam, one of the most tragic events in California’s history,” said Senator Feinstein. “The dam’s collapse had an impact on the entire nation, with news of the tragedy appearing in newspapers as far away as Maine. This monument will honor the more than 400 lives lost and serve as constant reminder of how critical investments in dam and infrastructure safety are to our communities. That message is just as true today as it was when this horrible event occurred.”

The bill would also establish a 440-acre national monument around the area that would be managed by the U.S. Forest Service, and it would authorize the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture to establish the memorial through the acceptance of donations for the purpose of creating and managing the Memorial.

H.R. 2156, the house companion bill authored by Representatives Steve Knight (CA-25) and Julia Brownley (CA-26), unanimously passed the U.S. House of Representatives earlier this year.

 
Actor and comedian Cathy Ladman to host

The National Alliance on Mental Illness, Ventura County in conjunction with the Newbury Park High School Theater Department is pleased to announce its first-ever fundraising variety show and night at the theater: Celebrate RECOVERY! An evening of performance to celebrate the depth and diversity of life in recovery with mental illness.

Cathy Ladman has appeared on The Tonight Show nine times, and was also featured on the last two of Johnny Carson’s Tonight Show Anniversary shows, which she considers to be a great honor. She’s made five appearances on The Late Show with Craig Ferguson, had her own HBO One Night Stand comedy special, and was awarded the American Comedy Award for Best Female Stand-Up Comic. A native New Yorker, now living in Los Angeles, Cathy has acted extensively in film and television. Some projects include Mad Men, Curb Your Enthusiasm, and Everybody Loves Raymond. She is currently developing her solo show, “Does This Show Make Me Look Fat?,” about her journey with anorexia, and you can see her in her recurring role on the new Showtime series, “I’m Dying Up Here.”

As host and emcee of Celebrate RECOVERY!, Cathy will share stories of her own lived experience related to having a mental health condition. Stories of resilience and hope with a touch of humor.

The event will be held on October 21, 2017 at 6:00p.m. at the Newbury Park High School Performing Arts Center. Regular ticket prices are $125 each and include catered appetizers before the show, a full evening of entertainment, and a dessert bar with coffee afterwards. Performances will include comedy, music, skit, dance, poetry, and more and will be presented by a diverse mix of performers of all ages. Performers will have connections to the mental health community or will have a mental health diagnosis themselves. Tickets are on sale now at www.showtix4u.com. Tickets for door prize drawings will be available for purchase on site, and prizes will be valued at a minimum of $100.

NAMI’s classes, programs, and presentations are FREE to the public. In 2016 alone, NAMI’s coordinated outreach served the needs of over 5,000 community members, facilitated by 185 volunteers! Events like Celebrate RECOVERY! are vital to NAMI’s ability to meet the ever expanding needs of Ventura County community members.

And it will also be an opportunity to reach out in order to raise awareness and erase the stigma of mental illness.

NAMI, the National Alliance on Mental Illness, is the nation’s largest grassroots mental health organization dedicated to building better lives for the millions of Americans affected by mental illness. NAMI Ventura County is an affiliate of NAMI Ca. NAMI Ventura County and dedicated volunteer members and leaders work tirelessly to raise awareness and provide essential education, advocacy and support group programs for people in our community living with mental illness and their loved ones.

Sponsorship opportunities are available. Please contact david@namiventura.org.

 
Pictured (l-r) is Mimi Burns and Civic Pride representative Ari Larson standing in the “Friendship Garden,” which was awarded Fillmore Civic Pride’s Yard of the Month for September 2017.
Pictured (l-r) is Mimi Burns and Civic Pride representative Ari Larson standing in the “Friendship Garden,” which was awarded Fillmore Civic Pride’s Yard of the Month for September 2017.
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Mimi Burns’ was awarded the September 2017 Yard of the Month by Civic Pride representative Ari Larson. Mimi was presented with a $40 gift certificate courtesy of Otto & Sons Nursery.

When asked about the inspiration for her yard, Mimi said, “I wanted to have a yard that was low maintenance and didn't need much watering. My friends Kim and Wade started by putting up the split rail fence. They then leveled the yard and put the extra dirt in the center making the planter for the flower bed. Kim then put the grass turf down for me. I got the rocks from my friend Susan and my daughter Carina.”

“I haven't bought a single plant for my yard - everything comes from friends and family. The pine tree was a Christmas present from Carina. The white birch and the purple plum tree were replants from a neighbor that Wade planted for me. The succulents, geraniums and everything else in the yard come from friends who have given me clippings from their plants,” says Mimi when asked about the types of plants featured in her yard.

Regarding the design of the garden, Mimi stated, “I have taken these clippings and randomly planted them throughout and it is surprising how they have taken hold and flourished. I want to thank everyone who has contributed to my ‘friendship garden.’ It is still a work in progress and a true reflection of ‘all things are possible.’ Thank you.”

The house is located at 450 Fillmore St. If you would like to nominate a yard in the Fillmore area please email Ari Larson at petenari55@hotmail.com or call 805.794.7590.

 

Ventura County Library announces the addition of the MyVCLib mobile app for instant access to Library Services. We have an app for you! Ventura County Library customers can now quickly access online services and resources via an icon on their mobile devices.

The mobile app “MyVCLib” delivers the Ventura County Library catalog along with account services such as catalog search, holds, and renewals. You can find the app in the Google Play or iTunes app stores.

Downloadable book and online resource apps are integrated within MyVCLib for easy access to eBooks, eAudiobooks, language learning, movies, and music. Users also have quick links to Ventura County eLibrary content, the Library’s event calendar, VCL news, and library location information.

Other features include BookLook, allowing customers to scan a book’s bar code (for example, when in a bookstore) to see if the library owns the title, “Popular This Week” suggested reading lists, a place to store library card numbers, and links to the library’s social media and website.

Ventura County Library System:
Inspiring our community to explore, discover and connect.
The Ventura County Library is available 24/7 at www.vencolibrary.org

 

VENTURA CA - District Attorney Gregory D. Totten announced today the creation of a Misdemeanor Diversion Program for low-level misdemeanor offenders. The program is an effort to reduce recidivism by providing meaningful education and rehabilitation to appropriate individuals. Beginning October 1, 2017, eligible offenders who choose to participate in diversion will have their criminal charges deferred while they complete rehabilitative classes and pay any restitution owed to the victims. Programming is based on a therapeutic concept known as cognitive behavioral therapy and addresses the individual’s particular criminal actions.

Individuals who commit specified misdemeanor crimes will be eligible for diversion only if they have never been convicted of a felony, have not previously been diverted, and have not been convicted of a misdemeanor in the past 10 years. More serious misdemeanor crimes are excluded from diversion, such as driving under the influence, domestic violence, gang-related offenses, crimes exhibiting criminal sophistication, and crimes of significant violence.

Participation is voluntary for offenders. Those who choose not to participate or who fail to complete the program will face criminal charges that have been authorized by a deputy district attorney. Those who complete the diversion program and pay victim restitution, if any is owed, will not face prosecution.

The program is funded entirely by offenders, with neither cost nor revenue to the District Attorney’s Office or the County of Ventura. Payment plans are available and a portion of each fee will be deposited into an indigent offender fund that will be used to reduce program fees for indigent defendants who cannot afford the full fee.

The Misdemeanor Diversion Program will be administered by Pacific Educational Services, Inc. (PES), a leader in California diversion programs. PES was selected based upon their proven record of success. A study conducted by the Orange County District Attorney’s Office found that while 21 percent of those who declined diversion re-offended within one year, only 6 percent of those who completed the PES program committed a new crime in that timeframe.

The goals of the Misdemeanor Diversion Program are to achieve more positive outcomes and reduce recidivism. Similar programs currently operate in various California counties, including San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, Riverside, San Bernardino, and Orange Counties.

Of the program, Mr. Totten stated:
My hope is this program will provide offenders with an opportunity to address the issues that led them to offend in the first place. If we can do that, we will improve the safety of our community and help offenders to change their lives for the better.