At Tuesday night’s City Council meeting Pastor Leslie Lanier, of Wayfarer's Chapel Lutheran Church, among nearly a dozen others, came to the thank the City for rejecting the proposal to host a Pride Resource Fair this year.
At Tuesday night’s City Council meeting Pastor Leslie Lanier, of Wayfarer's Chapel Lutheran Church, among nearly a dozen others, came to the thank the City for rejecting the proposal to host a Pride Resource Fair this year.

About a dozen people came out (no pun intended) to thank the City of Fillmore for its decision to not sponsor a Pride Resource Fair this year, as it did in June 2021.

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8. NEW BUSINESS
All items passed 5-0, with the Mid-Year Budget accepted and filed.

8.A CITY COUNCIL APPROVE OF PROPOSED USES OF AMERICAN RESCUE PLAN FUNDS SR - AMERICAN RESCUE PLAN ACT FUNDS

8.B CITY COUNCIL CONSIDERATION OF A CONTRACT WITH RSG TO ASSIT WITH COMPLIANCE REQUIREMENTS OF THE AMERICAN RESCUE PLAN ACT SR - RSG ARPA ASSISTANCE

8.C FY 2021-22 MID-YEAR FINANCIAL REPORT FY 2021-22 MID-YEAR FINANCIAL REPORT

8.D CITY COUNCIL DISCUSSION OF POTENTIAL FUNDING REHABILITATION FOR THE VETERANS MEMORIAL DISTRICT (VMD) BUILDING SR - RENOVATION MEMORIAL BUILDING

RECOMMENDATION That the City Council approve a loan agreement with the District to fund the upfront costs of the $1.2M Phase 1 project for the VMD renovation project.

8.E INTRODUCTION OF ORDINANCE NO. 21-938 UPDATING FILLMORE MUNICIPAL CODER CHAPTER 15.38 “FIREWORKS” FILLMORE - STAFF REPORT UPDATE TO FMC CHAPTER 15.38

8.F CONSIDERATION OF AN AGREEMENT TO PURSUE A CONDITIONAL USE PERMIT FOR 908 B STREET STAFF REPORT - AGREEMENT WITH JEM

8.G REQUEST BY A NEW OWNER TO WAIVE PENALTIES AND INTEREST OWED ON CFD 6 FILLMORE STAFF REPORT - CFD 6 - REQUEST TO WAIVE PENALTIES AND INTEREST

8.H APPOINTMENT TO FILL ONE OF THE CITY OF FILLMORE’S SEATS ON THE CITIZENS TRASPORTATION ADVISORY COMMITTEE/SOCIAL SERVICE TRANSPORTATION ADVISORY COUNCIL (CTAC/SSTAC) VCTC_CTAC_STAC_APPOINMENT_STAFF_REPORT

8.I APPOINTMENT TO THE PARKS AND RECREATION COMMISSION SR - PARKS AND REC COMMISSION 2022 APPOINTMENT

8.J APPROVE THE 2022-2023 VENTURA COUNTY ANIMAL SERVICE LEVEL REQUEST VENTURA COUNTY ANIMAL SERVICES SERVICE LEVEL- STAFF REPORT

 


 
On Wednesday, April 6th, 2022, at approximately 10:00am, Fillmore Police Department was investigating a bomb threat at Fillmore High School causing students and staff to be evacuated, and surrounding streets closed. Fillmore Fire was staged for precaution; no explosives were located. The Ventura County Sheriff ’s Bomb/Arson Unit was on scene and Simi Valley PD, along with Ventura City Police K-9 and CSU Northridge Police Department. Photo credit Angel Esquivel-AE News.
On Wednesday, April 6th, 2022, at approximately 10:00am, Fillmore Police Department was investigating a bomb threat at Fillmore High School causing students and staff to be evacuated, and surrounding streets closed. Fillmore Fire was staged for precaution; no explosives were located. The Ventura County Sheriff ’s Bomb/Arson Unit was on scene and Simi Valley PD, along with Ventura City Police K-9 and CSU Northridge Police Department. Photo credit Angel Esquivel-AE News.
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Ventura County Sheriff's Department
Ventura County Sheriff's Department

The Fillmore Police Department conducted a multi-agency evacuation and search of Fillmore High School in response to a bomb threat.

At approximately 10:00 AM, the front office of the Fillmore High School received a bomb threat to the school’s campus. The high school’s staff immediately notified the School Resource Officers (SRO), who were able to coordinate with patrol deputies and the high school and Fillmore School District a safe evacuation of all students and staff within minutes of the threat.

Members of the Sherriff’s Bomb/Arson Unit, Fillmore Detectives, and Fillmore Patrol Deputies arrived to assist with a search of the school. Several K-9 Units assigned to surrounding law enforcement agencies also responded with K-9’s trained in bomb detection provided mutual aid for the search.

The responding units conducted an extensive search of the high school’s campus. The search teams found no evidence of bombs or suspicious items. The teams determined the school to be safe, and students were allowed to return to campus for their final classes.

The Fillmore School District worked closely with Fillmore Police Department to provide support and safety for the students during the evacuation. Fillmore School District staff and the Fillmore Police Department set up a central location for parents who wanted to pick up their children before the end of school.

The SRO’s close partnership with the high school and the school district staff allowed for the prompt response of patrol units and school support resources for the safety and care of the students. The Fillmore Police Department takes pride its relationship with the Fillmore School District and its schools which led to an efficient and coordinated effort during this incident.

The investigation into the threats is ongoing. Anyone with information regarding the threats is encouraged to call the Fillmore Police Department or Ventura County Crime Stoppers at the below listed numbers.

Nature of Incident: Bomb Threat
Report Number: 22-44615
Location: Fillmore High School
Date & Time: 04/06/2022 10:00 AM
Unit(s) Responsible: Fillmore Patrol, Fillmore Detective Bureau, School Resource Officer Unit, Sheriff’s Bomb/Arson Unit, Several Police K-9 Units
Prepared by: Sergeant Will Hollowell
News Release Date: 04/06/2022
Media Follow-Up Contact: Fillmore Police Department, Deputy Jonathan Schnereger, (805) 524-2233
Fillmore School District: Fillmore Superintendent Christine Schieferle, (805) 524-6036
Approved by: Captain Jose Rivera

Ventura County Crime Stoppers will pay up to $1,000 reward for information, which leads to the arrest and criminal complaint against the person(s) responsible for this crime. The caller may remain anonymous. The call is not recorded. Call Crime Stoppers at 800-222-TIPS (8477).

 


 
On April 10, 2022, at 7:48pm, Ventura County Sheriff’s Department, Fillmore City Fire and AMR Paramedics were dispatched to a reported injury vehicle accident that had just occurred in the area of Fourth Street / Goodenough Road. Arriving fire crews reported two vehicles with two patients being transported to the hospital, conditions unknown. Cause of the crash is under investigation. Photo credit Angel Esquivel—AE News.
On April 10, 2022, at 7:48pm, Ventura County Sheriff’s Department, Fillmore City Fire and AMR Paramedics were dispatched to a reported injury vehicle accident that had just occurred in the area of Fourth Street / Goodenough Road. Arriving fire crews reported two vehicles with two patients being transported to the hospital, conditions unknown. Cause of the crash is under investigation. Photo credit Angel Esquivel—AE News.
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Fillmore’s Chalk Festival was well attended on Saturday, April 9. Lots of kids and parents decorated the sidewalks in front of Fillmore City Hall with colorful chalks. A live music trio played some great oldies but goodies, and Mr. Softee showed up to the delight of ice cream lovers.
Fillmore’s Chalk Festival was well attended on Saturday, April 9. Lots of kids and parents decorated the sidewalks in front of Fillmore City Hall with colorful chalks. A live music trio played some great oldies but goodies, and Mr. Softee showed up to the delight of ice cream lovers.
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The Fillmore Citrus Fruit Association in 1906. Photos courtesy Fillmore Historical Museum.
The Fillmore Citrus Fruit Association in 1906. Photos courtesy Fillmore Historical Museum.
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The Fillmore Citrus Association Lemon Packinghouse in the 1930s.
The Fillmore Citrus Association Lemon Packinghouse in the 1930s.
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Building boxes for Sparr Fruit Company circa 1915, with two workers smiling while they stop building for a photo.
Building boxes for Sparr Fruit Company circa 1915, with two workers smiling while they stop building for a photo.
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Sparr Fruit Company circa 1910.
Sparr Fruit Company circa 1910.
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Loading freight car, 1930.
Loading freight car, 1930.
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Courtesy Fillmore Historical Museum
Agriculture was what built Fillmore and the surrounding communities. First it was dry land farming such as barley and lima beans. Then came orchards, especially apricot and walnuts. Soon some settlers started planting citrus trees, especially oranges. In 1889, C. C. Elkins planted the first commercial orange grove in the Fillmore area. With the growth of citrus in the valley, packinghouses were soon needed.

The Fillmore Citrus Association was formed in 1897 with David Felsenthal as president. In 1899, the Association bought property for $50 at Sespe Avenue and A Street and built its packinghouse on the site for $1,500.

Soon more packinghouses followed. Some were locally owned like the Fremlin-Walker Packinghouse off Santa Clara Street.

Others were owned by companies from elsewhere. One of the earliest of these was the Sparr Packinghouse. Sparr was a Riverside, California, company which opened a packinghouse in Fillmore in the first decade of the 20th century. The packinghouse was on the southwest corner of Main and Central. The first packinghouse burned in 1913 and was rebuilt. The later building burned in 1970.

By 1930, Mutual Orange Distributors, which had started in Redlands in 1910, had a packinghouse in Fillmore on Old Telegraph Road.

In 1913, Frank Erskine, who had been with a citrus association in Whittier, was hired as the manager of the Fillmore Citrus Association. Besides overseeing the construction of a new orange packinghouse in 1918 and a new lemon packinghouse in 1924, he also organized two bands made up of employees, the Fillmore Citrus Association American Band and the Fillmore Citrus Association Mexican Band. According to the business card of the bands, “Music for any occasion at reasonable rates. Either band separately or the two bands consolidated. Proper instrumentation in any number of men from sixteen to fifty.” The bands performed throughout the region as well as on the radio. Erskine left the Fillmore Citrus Association in 1929 to join the newly formed Ramona Savings and Loan.

As the citrus industry expanded in the area, more workers were needed. Jobs included not just picking the oranges, but loading field boxes weighing as much as ninety (90) pounds onto wagons and later trucks. Once the fruit was at the packinghouse it had to be unloaded and then washed. In 1916, mechanical washing machines were installed at the Fillmore Citrus Association orange packinghouse. The fruit had to be graded for size and quality, then packed into boxes by local women workers. The boxes again had to be loaded into trucks or train cars. Mechanics to work on the machinery of the packinghouse and truck drivers were needed.

To ease the labor shortage for pickers, in 1941 the Fillmore Citrus Association built a labor camp in Fillmore. In 1942, they contracted with the Villasenor family, who owned a local restaurant, to provide meals for those living at the camp. This evolved into the Villasenors managing the camp and, in 1979, buying the camp.

Finally, in 1946, the Fillmore Citrus Association built a second orange packinghouse. This building now houses Nova Storage which recognizes the building’s history with murals of citrus crate labels on the building.

Only one citrus packinghouse continues to operate in Fillmore, the Villa Park Orchards Association packinghouse at the former MOD location. The other buildings have been repurposed to avocado packinghouses, artist studios, and storage facilities. Whatever their use, they are a reminder of why Fillmore came to be.

 


 
Construction is going full steam on the Fillmore Library Expansion Project which began in November of 2021; the project will be adding a Classroom, Reading Room., Computer Room, Study Rooms and STEAM/Innovation Lab. The project is funded by the CA State Library, CDBG, City of Fillmore, and Fillmore Wigley Bequest Trust Account. It’s managed by Ventura County Public Works Agency, the Architect Anderson Kulwiec Appleby and the Contraction is Monet Construction. Total cost for construction is $1,940,000 and the anticipated date of completion is August 2022.
Construction is going full steam on the Fillmore Library Expansion Project which began in November of 2021; the project will be adding a Classroom, Reading Room., Computer Room, Study Rooms and STEAM/Innovation Lab. The project is funded by the CA State Library, CDBG, City of Fillmore, and Fillmore Wigley Bequest Trust Account. It’s managed by Ventura County Public Works Agency, the Architect Anderson Kulwiec Appleby and the Contraction is Monet Construction. Total cost for construction is $1,940,000 and the anticipated date of completion is August 2022.
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The Street Sign Dedication Ceremony for Max Pina Way will be held Saturday, April 9th at 11:30am in the alley next to the Fillmore Police and Sheriff Station. The City of Fillmore will honor Fillmore Police SGT. Pina, VCSO Deputy and City of Fillmore Resource Officer, for his decades of service with the citizens and youth of Fillmore. Thank you to Fillmore City Manager Dave Rowlands and Fillmore Police Chief Capt. Garo Kuredjian for their support and suggestions which helped with the location and decor of the sign. The Mayor and Fillmore City Council members, along with Ventura County Sheriff Aad Undersheriff, will be attending. Please join Max’s family and friends at the celebration! There will a be hotdogs, hamburgers and drinks available
after the ceremony.

 


 
On March 26th, Fillmore High hosted their Beautification Day along with the Big Brothers Big Sisters of Ventura County Mentor Club, Fillmore students and other local community programs and members. Photo courtesy Fillmore High Flashes blog.
On March 26th, Fillmore High hosted their Beautification Day along with the Big Brothers Big Sisters of Ventura County Mentor Club, Fillmore students and other local community programs and members. Photo courtesy Fillmore High Flashes blog.
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This year, after returning to in-person learning, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Ventura County Mentor Club at Fillmore High School (FHS) decided to have a FHS Beautification Day on March 26, 2022. Beautification Day consisted of Fillmore students and community members picking up trash, rocks, raking leaves, painting the faded blue wood tables and faded walls, pruning rose bushes, and scraping gum from the campus sidewalks. Each year for the past ten years, the youth of the FHS Mentor Club have been creating one big community project for the student members to organize throughout the school year. Throughout the years, the projects they work on have been a beneficial learning experience for the youth in a variety of ways. They had the experience of working in a group and brainstorming ideas. Collectively they had peer discussions to resolve the logistics of the project. After they decided on the project, there was a list of "to-do" tasks that they divided among one another. The project was integrated into their community. Our youth present their project to city council members, school administrators, and local adult service clubs such as the Fillmore Lions and Rotary Club. All high school students and mentors had an opportunity to get involved with the community and make connections. Some students felt more confident planning, others speaking in public, and others working hands-on. As their supervisor, I see how they develop their social skills as they continue in the Mentor Club. Some of the benefits of volunteering in their community include the chance to network and meet new people, learn new skills and increase self-efficacy while making a positive impact in their community. The event was well attended by both students and community members. FHS students liked that their campus shined a little bit more than usual. Thank you to the Fillmore Lions and Rotary Club members who participated, the Fillmore Lions Club for sponsoring the pan dulce in the morning, and the pizza lunch. A BIG THANKS TO ALL THE FILLMORE UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT (FUSD) STUDENTS that volunteered on a Saturday morning and to the FUSD for the cleaning supplies and continuous support.

Amelia Aparicio,
Program Site Manager,
Big Brothers Big Sisters of Ventura County

 


 

"Truth, beauty and goodness"...these are what our community needs! And the truth is that we have some amazing gardeners among us bringing such beauty, and all to share for the good of others. Gardeners define what it means to live well, no matter how big or small the gardens be...

There is supposed to be only one 'Yard of the Month', but if you don't mind I want to include other sites for you to check out each month from our fair town...these homes didn't win the prize, but in my eyes they embody the truth of beauty and goodness! If you find yourself near one of these sites, stop by. Do check out the home at 1044 Candalaria where there are so many lovely personal touches that make it a delight to see. The 745 Fine Street home has done an exceptional job of planting its front yard to low maintenance, drought resistant, and/or edible plant varieties- and it all pulls together to enhance the facade of the home, well done! At 615 Yucca the folks here put in an orchard of fruit trees in the front yard with a side raised bed of lovely perennials, all secured with a permascape that not only looks beautiful but cuts down on water usage and maintenance. Finally at 607 Lemon Way, Apt. A, I spied a Dragon Fruit making its way over the wall- looking in I found the happiest of low maintenance, low water specimens (the scarlet blooming cactus was exquisite!) among joyful Mexican folk art. The yard was obviously set up for easy outside entertaining with family and friends. Gloriosa!

But April's 'Yard of the Month' goes to Doug and Nancy Cope at 603 Fourth St. They came to Fillmore over twenty years ago, originally from Canada, an entire country where everyone is just so dang 'nice'- something that our world can use a little more of today. Thus the Copes are not only to-the-core gardeners, but I was in for that to-the-core 'nice' of the Canadian way...so I knew I was in for a double dose of just plain wonderful.

They live in the 'office' of the original orange ranch there in north Fillmore and what they have done to make it 'home' is remarkable. I met them as I interrupted their outdoor dinner in the cozy nook they created, complete with overhead bistro lights that softly lit the sitting area and hearth made from blocks ("so the grand kids have a place to roast marshmallows"). Pots of succulents were tucked into every corner, mature roses interplanted with bearded iris line one side and where ever there was a strip of bare ground, Nancy made sure to have something growing. Any structurally needed walls were covered with something in full Spring bloom, whether it was panels of intoxicating jasmine or a retaining wall that carried happy geraniums up and over to other side, altogether some twenty feet of blooms!

Though the Copes live literally in the middle of town, they have created a place of quiet contemplation and privacy...but that does not mean they don't to contend with the issues of gardening in our environment. So far this year, they have trapped and rehomed nine racoons (who would have thought coons could have such a party in those tall and narrow Italian Cypress trees!), four possums and two squirrels... being nice goes only so far! The costs of utilities in Fillmore require water to be conserved- everything is hand watered or micro irrigated to control its use. Doug, quite the handyman, even put together in an irrigation system that has a weather sensitive component to it.

Their orchard is crowned with an original orange tree from the founding ranch. Alongside it, and girded by colorful Nasturtiums and Belladona Amaryllus, are Grapefruits, Guavas, a Pinkerton Avocado (a truly great, and locally found!, variety of avocado), Peaches, Bananas (Burros variety), Blueberries, Tangerines (the old variety of Dancy- so the taste is exceptional, and its marmalade is sublime), and Limes. Apricots and a Mission Fig that provides fig jam for everyone that visits, and over twenty grapevines of wine and table varieties, and a gorgeous Pomegranate that Nancy freezes the juice from for year round use. Whew! The Copes can sure show us how we can pack a lot into a small space!

The next project they have up their sleeves is to plant the large pots they picked up on travels to Mexico with various cactus to line the full sun driveway. There already is an 'Old Man
Cactus' in a pot at the entryway that they bought when it was no more then an inch in height- and it is now over three feet in height...with that, I think this next project will probably turn out well!

As I left their place, Nancy loaded me up with bulbs for my garden and two kinds of marmalades from her kitchen by way of their orchard...yup, I hope when I grow up to be as nice as these folks! Let's all love the places we live in by bringing beauty into them, and sharing our garden knowledge- and results!- with our neighbors...it is like a good infection -the truth about living a life well is it really does bring with it goodness and beauty. And let me hear from you if you find a gem of a garden in your neighborhood that I might miss otherwise...reginastehly@gmail.com Thanks for spreading the infection!

Remember the Flower Show this weekend folks! Share any and all your yard's beauty with the rest of the town- bring them by this Saturday between 7:30 and 10 AM. There will be plenty of help for you (don't worry if you can't remember the name of that 'special rose' from Aunt Clara!) and for $5/adult (youth free) you can bring in as many buckets of flowers, pots, bouquets and arrangements that you can muster! See you there!

 


 
Ventura County Sheriff's Department
Ventura County Sheriff's Department

Three men from Los Angeles are in custody for stealing catalytic converters, possession of burglary tools, conspiracy, and drug possession charges.

On March 30, 2022, deputies responded to a report of a catalytic converter theft that had just occurred in the 1000 block of King Street in the city of Fillmore. A witness reported they saw two suspicious vehicles speeding away from the location.

Patrol deputies immediately searched the location and were able to locate and stop on one of the vehicles the witness described. The vehicle was occupied by three subjects who were found to be in possession of burglary tools, floor jacks, and illegal drugs (Photographs attached). A floor jack was left behind at one of the crime scenes. In addition, two of the suspects had outstanding arrest warrants out of Los Angeles County.

The investigation revealed four additional theft victims in the same area. Detectives believe that these three suspects are part of a catalytic converter theft ring out of the city of Los Angeles. Detectives believe the second vehicle reported by the witness was also related to the theft.

All three suspect were taken into custody and subsequently booked at the Ventura County Pre-Trial Detention Facility for Grand Theft, Possession of Burglary Tools, Conspiracy to Commit a Crime, and Possession of Methamphetamines. All three remain in custody with each of their bail set at $250,000. Their court date is set for April 4, 2022.

Anyone with information pertaining to crimes of this nature are urged to contact Detective Valdez at the below listed number. The reporting party may remain anonymous.

In an effort to deter would-be thieves and to track stolen catalytic converters, the Fillmore Police Department has teamed up with several local auto repair shops. The below listed businesses have agreed to etch your license plate number and paint a Sheriff’s star on your catalytic converter, free of charge. Our goal is to deter a potential thief who might be planning to steal your catalytic converter. As soon as they see the painted Sheriff’s star and engraved license plate number, they will hopefully leave your car alone. If your catalytic converter is stolen, law enforcement or a scrap yard will be able to recognize the catalytic converter as stolen based on the markings. You can make an “Etch and Catch” appointment at any of the below locations in the city of Fillmore:

Ernie’s Auto Care & Smog De La Rosa Auto Repair
460 Ventura St. 665 Ventura St.
(805) 524-4477 (805) 524-0368

Bob’s Radiator Shop Fillmore Auto Electric & Tune
562 Santa Clara St. 405 Central Ave.
(805) 524-2526 (805) 524-7333

When you call for your appointment, make sure to mention it is for the “Etch and Catch” program. We are asking for our community’s help to prevent catalytic converter thefts. If you hear strange noises during the night, such as power tools or sawing, if you see a vehicle driving suspiciously slow through your neighborhood or stopped at the side of the road, if you see or hear ANYTHING out of the ordinary, please call Sheriff’s Dispatch at 911 or (805) 654-9511. Often, cases are solved when an observant resident calls when something does not seem quite right. For more information on the program click on video link: https://bit.ly/3uS59xL.

Join us in the fight on crime by following us on Twitter @VENTURASHERIFF, Facebook, Instagram@VCSHERIFF, and with Nixle by texting your zip code to 888777 to receive local law enforcement and public safety alerts and advisories.

Nature of Incident: Three Suspects Arrested for Stealing Catalytic Converters
Report Number: 22-41023
Location: 1000 Block of King Street, Fillmore, CA
200 Block of B Street, Fillmore, CA
Date & Time: March 30, 2022 at 2:42 AM
Unit(s) Responsible: Fillmore Police Department Patrol Services, Fillmore Detective Bureau
(S)uspects, (V)ictims, (P)arty, (D)ecedent City of Residence Age
(A-1) Luis Zepeda, Los Angeles, 36
(A-2) Ernesto Carbajal, Los Angeles, 31
(A-3) Pedro Martinez, Los Angeles, 32
Prepared by: Detective Sergeant Hollowell
Approved by: Captain Garo Kuredjian

Ventura County Crime Stoppers will pay up to $1,000 reward for information, which leads to the arrest and criminal complaint against the person(s) responsible for this crime. The caller may remain anonymous. The call is not recorded. Call Crime Stoppers at 800-222-TIPS (8477).