Sample of one of the billboards for this campaign.
Sample of one of the billboards for this campaign.
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Happy children hug their loved ones goodbye each morning, entrusting drivers with the safety of their parents and grandparents as they maintain the state’s highway system. Today Caltrans, along with the California State Transportation Agency (CalSTA), California Highway Patrol (CHP), and the California Office of Traffic Safety (OTS), announces the new “Be Work Zone Alert” public awareness campaign to remind drivers to slow down when passing highway workers.

“Our children depend on your safe driving all day, every day,” said Elissa Konove, Undersecretary of the California State Transportation Agency. “This campaign aims to protect highway workers who work inches from traffic daily to maintain our state’s transportation system.”

The department’s work to maintain and improve the system that empowers Californians to move around their state relies on these brave Californians’ service. But public servant is only their secondary job—many are also moms, dads, and grandparents. As the department and our partners strive Toward Zero Deaths, Caltrans aims to reduce deaths of workers in the line of duty. Billboards and radio spots will spread across California, to put a face to the families that depend on an alert traveling public.

“Being a transportation worker is one of the most hazardous professions in the nation” said Laurie Berman, Director of Caltrans. “We hope this campaign will move every Californian to consider the dangers the brave men and women of the Department face every single day and slow down.”

Your mindfulness is the key to reuniting these families every single day. Not just these highway workers’ lives are on the line—games of tag, catch, hide and seek, and years of happiness and memories are too. To view the new radio and TV spots, visit BeWorkZoneAlert.com/campaign.html.

“Mere seconds of inattention or distraction can be destructive to the lives of so many people,” said Warren Stanley, Commissioner of the California Highway Patrol (CHP). “The CHP is a proud partner of Caltrans and hopes efforts like this one reduce the risks to everyone on our roadways.”

California’s “Move Over” law requires all drivers to move over a lane if safe to do so, or slow down when they see amber flashing lights on Caltrans vehicles, or other emergency vehicles and tow trucks. Highway construction is one of the most dangerous occupations in the United States, and this law is a crucial tool to protect those on the road. In 2018, more than 7,000 work-zone collisions occurred on California roadways. About 2,300 resulted in injuries, and 46 involved a fatality. Nationally drivers and passengers account for 85 percent of the people who are killed in work zones.

Since 1921, 189 Caltrans employees have been killed on the job, and one of the biggest hazards to them and anyone working on the roads is from motorists who do not exercise caution. Those 189 employees represent scores of families torn apart.

“We live in a fast-paced world, but need to slow down on the road, particularly when highway workers are out trying to do their job,” OTS Director Rhonda Craft said. “This campaign is intended to remind drivers of the dangers highway workers face every day and be mindful of their presence.”

The campaign is funded with highway maintenance funds and a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

 


 
On Monday, June 17th, Jim Van Voorhis, Senior Public Inspector of the Engineering Services Department for the Ventura County Public Works, gave the Gazette a tour of the new Ventura County Fire Station, located at the corner of River and C Street. Ventura County's new Firehouse #27, located at the corner of River and C Streets, is
On Monday, June 17th, Jim Van Voorhis, Senior Public Inspector of the Engineering Services Department for the Ventura County Public Works, gave the Gazette a tour of the new Ventura County Fire Station, located at the corner of River and C Street. Ventura County's new Firehouse #27, located at the corner of River and C Streets, is "again" nearing completion. Following a 2-year cessation of construction, due to default of the primary contractor, Senior Public Works Inspector Jim Van Voorhis informed the Gazette that the station should be up-and-running within a couple of months. All primary systems have been tested and found to be in good working order. Remaining to be completed are gates, motors for vertical doors, and some further testing of equipment. During the past week most of the landscaping has been finished. Trees and shrubs are being irrigated using recycled water from the city's treatment plant.
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Pictured above are the 2019 Sierra High School and Heritage Valley Independent Study graduates. Thirty-eight students graduated Wednesday, June 5th, from SHS/HVIS. Way to go Warriors! Photo Courtesy Sierra High School Website.
Pictured above are the 2019 Sierra High School and Heritage Valley Independent Study graduates. Thirty-eight students graduated Wednesday, June 5th, from SHS/HVIS. Way to go Warriors! Photo Courtesy Sierra High School Website.
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At last week’s city council meeting council approved development permit for 77 affordable workforce housing units to be constructed at the northeast corner of Mountain View and Highway 126. (Above) is an architects rendering of the units.
At last week’s city council meeting council approved development permit for 77 affordable workforce housing units to be constructed at the northeast corner of Mountain View and Highway 126. (Above) is an architects rendering of the units.
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The vacant lot proposed for development.
The vacant lot proposed for development.
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Emilio Montiel, 36, Santa Paula.
Emilio Montiel, 36, Santa Paula.

A Santa Paula gang member was recently convicted of firearms charges that will send him to prison for 6 years.

On 11-19-18, detectives from the Fillmore Police Department’s Investigative Unit received information about a female subject who had a warrant for her arrest. She was allegedly staying at a residence in the 700 block of Harvard Blvd in the city of Santa Paula. Acting on the information, investigators responded to the location and served the warrant. During the service of the warrant, they encountered the female and her boyfriend, Emilio Montiel. Montiel was uncooperative and refused to follow deputies’ directives. Montiel initially provided a false name to detectives because he had an outstanding warrant for his arrest.

Investigators conducted a search of the location per the probation terms for the female and Montiel. During the search, detectives found a loaded handgun in a common area. In addition, detectives determined both were under the influence of drugs and they were arrested for related charges.

A follow-up investigation was conducted by investigators and the Ventura County Sheriff’s Forensic Science Laboratory. A forensic analysis was completed on the handgun and scientists conclusively located Montiel's DNA on the handgun. In addition, detectives authored a search warrant for his cellular phone and discovered photographs showing he was in possession of a second handgun. The District Attorney’s Office elected to file additional charges on Montiel being a felon in possession of a firearm.

Montiel recently had a jury trial within the Ventura County Superior Court system. He was found guilty of two counts of 29800 (a)(1) PC- possession of a firearm with prior conviction, 148 (a)(1)- PC- obstructing a peace officer, 148.9 (a) PC- providing false information to a peace officer.

The Ventura County Sheriff’s Forensic Science Laboratory (FSL) plays an integral part in solving crime. They are comprised of 31 scientists and 8 support staff who analyze thousands of cases per year. This case was a fine example how detectives and scientists’ thorough investigative techniques worked in conjunction to obtain a conviction of a subject who is a threat to public safety.

Nature of Incident: Gang Member Convicted of Possession of Firearms
Report Number: 18-180277
Location: 700 Block of Harvard Blvd, Santa Paula
Date & Time: 05-17-19
Unit(s) Responsible: Fillmore Detective Bureau/ VCSO’s Forensic Science Laboratory
(S)uspects, (V)ictims, (P)arty, (D)ecedent City of Residence Age
(S) Emilio Montiel, 36, Santa Paula
Prepared by: Sergeant Vince Alvarez
Approved by: Captain Eric Tennessen

 


 

In an effort to recharge the aquifer, dilute nitrates and neutralize sea water intrusion issues for Ventura County, United Water Conservation initiated an immense water release from its Santa Felicia Dam at Lake Piru on June 3, 2019. Normally, conserved water is released from Santa Felicia Dam in the fall of each year, but, due to the saturated conditions in the Santa Clara River and its tributaries, water release in June will assure maximum regional benefits. The release of water, the largest amount in decades, will help combat rising nitrate levels such as those recently seen in the El Rio community in May, which forced the shut-down of drinking water wells for 364 residential and business customers of Vineyard Avenue Acres Mutual Water. “This historical release of water at our Santa Felicia Dam will ultimately result in the diversion of high-quality water at our Freeman Diversion facility, helping to recharge the area’s aquifer still recovering from drought and helping to offset the increasing nitrate levels of wells within the immediate vicinity of El Rio. It will also help with sea water intrusion issues we continue seeing on the Oxnard Plain,” explains Mauricio Guardado, General Manager for United Water Conservation District. “The timing of the release is crucial in that we want to take advantage of the high saturation level of the Santa Clara River that exists right now with all of the rain we’ve had. This will allow us to make the most of the water release,” added Guardado. The District serves as the conservator of groundwater resources that are utilized by the cities of Oxnard, Port Hueneme, Ventura, Santa Paula and Fillmore, as well as several mutual water districts, farms and individual pumpers.

 
Pictured above are Larry Cassidy and his son Larson, who will be taking part in the Great Cycle Challenge to fight Kids Cancer. Cancer is the biggest killer of kids from disease in the USA; 38 children die every week. Please donate now and support his challenge to fight kids’ cancer!
Pictured above are Larry Cassidy and his son Larson, who will be taking part in the Great Cycle Challenge to fight Kids Cancer. Cancer is the biggest killer of kids from disease in the USA; 38 children die every week. Please donate now and support his challenge to fight kids’ cancer!
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This June, I am taking part in the Great Cycle Challenge to fight kids' cancer!

Why? Because right now, cancer is the biggest killer of children from disease in the United States. Over 15,700 children are diagnosed every year, and sadly, 38 children die of cancer every week.

Kids should be living life, not fighting for it.

So I am raising funds through my challenge to help these kids and support Children's Cancer Research Fund to allow them to continue their work to develop lifesaving treatments and find a cure for childhood cancer.

Please support me by making a donation to give these kids the brighter futures they deserve.

Your support will change little lives.

Thank you,
Larry Cassidy,
Fillmore

To donate, please visit https://greatcyclechallenge.com/Riders/LarryCassidy

About The Great Cycle Challenge
Over the past 19 days, riders from every state across our great country have pedaled 2,496,885 miles, on all types of bikes and in all kinds of weather. It's been incredible to witness this fantastic event grow over the past 5 years, and the 2019 Great Cycle Challenge is set to break all the records.

Here are just some of the key stats so far this month:

80,209 riders are taking part from every state in the country.

144,292 individual donations have been received to support your efforts.

$7,489,619 has been raised (so far) making this year's event the biggest EVER in the global history of the challenge. WOW.

Together, we've logged 180,079 rides and ridden a total of 2,496,885 miles which is the equivalent of pedaling for 7,928 days (non-stop).

On the other side, over those 19 days you've been riding in the challenge:

817 American families have heard the painful words, "your child has cancer."

We've lost 95 children to this terrible disease.

 
At last night’s school board meeting Mary Ford spoke to the board her concerns regarding disruptive student conduct at the Fillmore Middle School.
At last night’s school board meeting Mary Ford spoke to the board her concerns regarding disruptive student conduct at the Fillmore Middle School.

Spring 2019 Sports Update for Fillmore High School
The Governing Board received a presentation on the Spring 2019 Sports Update. Fillmore High School Principal, John Wilber presented the information.

Spring 2019 Sports Medicine Report for Fillmore High School
The Governing Board received a presentation on the Spring 2019 Sports Medicine Report. Director of Sports Medicine, Breanna McLain presented the information.

Emergency Action Plan for Athletics 2019-2020
The Governing Board received a presentation on the Emergency Action Plan for Athletics 2019-2020. Director of Sports Medicine, Breanna McLain presented the information.

Local Control and Accountability Plan for 2019-2020 and the 2019-2020 Proposed Budget
The Governing Board approved the Local Control Accountability Plan for 2019-2020 and also approved the 2019-2020 Proposed Budget.

Approve Pre-Qualified Pool of Construction Project Management Firms for Various District Projects
The Governing Board approved a pool of pre-qualified Construction Project Management Firms for current and future Measure V Bond Projects. The following firms met the threshold and are approved:
1. Linik Corp. Builders Management
2. Pacifica Services Inc.
3. SiteLogIQ united with IES
4. TELACU Construction Management

Personnel Recommendations
The Governing Board approved all personnel recommendations including new hires, promotions, resignations and leaves.

 
Photo of the Week "Baldwin steam engine #14 approaching the Santa Clara River Valley Railroad Historical Society’s turntable" by Bob Crum. Photo data: Canon 7DMKII camera, manual mode, Tamron 16-300m lens @16mm. Exposure; ISO 4000, aperture f/13, 1/250 second shutter speed.
Photo of the Week "Baldwin steam engine #14 approaching the Santa Clara River Valley Railroad Historical Society’s turntable" by Bob Crum. Photo data: Canon 7DMKII camera, manual mode, Tamron 16-300m lens @16mm. Exposure; ISO 4000, aperture f/13, 1/250 second shutter speed.
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Noise & Histograms!
Bob Crum
Bob Crum

I previously mentioned that my readership is presently 2,397,602. Max Z. wrote to challenge the number. Max, here's the data: 276 readers in the U.K., 830 throughout Europe, seven in Hong Kong, five mermaids, the remaining 2,396,484, including Max, are Fillmore readers!

Also, in my previous column, I mentioned histograms and some got hysterical. Reader Larry A., emailed me telling me that I was rude introducing a technical term without an explanation. OK, I'll explain!

Photography is an art form and a digital image or print is the artistic expression. But a little camera technical know-how helps one create the desired photograph. One great aid is the camera's histogram. While deceptively simple at first glance, a histogram contains a wealth of image information. However, it will not tell you whether or not your composition is compelling or provide the Power Ball winning numbers!

A. Make a photo and chimp the shot. (remember chimping from last week?) B. Push your camera's “Info” button. Voila, the histogram! It quickly tells you the light levels of the exposure in graph form. The histogram plots light (luminosity) levels from black – the left end (wall) of the histogram – to pure white – the right side (wall) of the graph.

A perfect histogram rises gently from the left cresting in the midsection and gradually drops to the right, indicating a full range of tones from C# to B-flat. Oops, I mean luminosity tones. By not hitting either wall, the histogram indicates that there's no loss of detail in shadows or in the highlights. Celebrate! Your exposure is sweet.

A histogram bunched up at the right wall is a high-key image. Spikes at the right wall indicates burned-out (clipped) highlights, i.e., no detail in the highlights. Not good. But note that the sun is so bright that it will spike at the right wall. A histogram hitting the left wall indicates underexposure with blacks clipped, meaning no detail in the shadows. Not good. Mostly. Now revel in your new histogram expertise.

Roger M. wrote insisting that the ISO of 10000 of last week's photo of the week is a typo. It's not! However, he's right to question the number. An ISO that high is almost always unacceptably degraded. Generally speaking, an ISO higher than about 1500 will begin to show noise. Image noise appears as random specks and when excessive, significantly degrades image quality. At 10000, there should be so much digital noise that it should look like it was snowing.

At an ISO of 10000, why isn't there noise apparent in the photo? The secret is deft post-processing (editing). With two computer software programs and and two plugins, I utilize a three-step process to eliminate as much noise (image specks) as possible. But the process requires patience because noise reduction typically decreases image sharpness and tends to dull detail. The process is like a do-si-do dance, a delicate balance of noise reduction while maintaining image detail and contrast. Not always easily accomplished. Get it all right and voila, a magnificent image sans noise.

Even in problematic event light, I can usually maintain a shutter speed sufficient to compensate for camera shake, and hold the aperture at f/8 through f/11 for depth of field and not worry about how high in ISO auto mode it has to go for a proper exposure because I'm can usually salvage the image from excessive noise in post-processing. Keyword: Usually. It doesn't always work.

Photo of the week is steam engine #14 heading for the Santa Clara Valley Railroad Historical Society's turntable during a media photo op. Happy photoing!

Send comments, questions or suggestions to: focusonphotgraphy@earthlink.net

 
On Thursday, June 6th at 9:49 p.m., Fillmore Fire and Ventura County Sheriff received a call of a traffic collision at 405 River Street. Units arrived on scene at 9:54 p.m. to find one vehicle crashed into a parked car. No injuries occurred. Sheriff’s conducted a field sobriety test. The crash was not a result of alcohol. Area residents came outside to investigate after hearing the impact. Photos courtesy Ventura County News Crew.
On Thursday, June 6th at 9:49 p.m., Fillmore Fire and Ventura County Sheriff received a call of a traffic collision at 405 River Street. Units arrived on scene at 9:54 p.m. to find one vehicle crashed into a parked car. No injuries occurred. Sheriff’s conducted a field sobriety test. The crash was not a result of alcohol. Area residents came outside to investigate after hearing the impact. Photos courtesy Ventura County News Crew.
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