Letters to the Editor
November 27, 2014

To the Editor:
Regarding the recent Fillmore school board elections, which were thoroughly covered in these pages, it seems to me that none of the candidates proposed new methods of improving test scores and graduation rates. We're tired of hackneyed plans that include hiring “better” teachers and throwing more money at the schools. No one seems to be interested in confronting the “elephant in the room”: the fact that the students spend the vast majority of their lives outside of the classroom and that this is where they get the vast majority of their education.
Problem #1 A foreign language is predominantly spoken at many Fillmore homes. This means very few books, magazines or TV programming in our national language, let alone discussions that can expand vocabularies and introduce ideas that are pertinent to life in America. Sending a kid to kindergarten when he or she can’t speak English? Really?
Problem #2: Home cultures that foster a lack of assimilation into American society with its concept of upward mobility through education. The culture that's imported from most third-world countries doesn't emphasize class mobility, personal responsibility or pursuit of excellence. I’d like to know how many kids have parents that are doctors, engineers, accountants or other professionals. Any?
Problem #3: Parental role modeling that is linked to the foreign model of a huge subclass of virtual peasants being overseen by a powerful central government. The theme that parents are foreigners (in spirit, if not by citizenship) living in a foreign country instead of being fledgling Americans who are adopting the ways of their new country.
Problem #4: The creation of a Fillmore society in which an immigrant can live very comfortably without dealing with American ways. Ballots are written in foreign languages even though competence in spoken and written English is required for citizenship. It's been made very easy for families to live their lives without knowing a word of English and for all intents and purposes to live a Latin American lifestyle while enjoying the benefits of American wealth, culture, education and a welfare society.
Basically, we can't have a school district with foreign language-speaking, poorly educated families with little interest in assimilation into the American way of life and then expect to have their children excel academically and prosper economically. Given the environments most of these kids are coming from, how can we expect more than bottom test scores and few high school graduates? Happy talk from prospective politicians and school board members can’t change the realities of the students’ world outside of school. The solution is going to be hugely difficult, but failing to address the cause of the problem isn't a good way to get started with fixing it.
Tim Imhoff
Fillmore

 


 
Letters to the Editor
November 20, 2014

To the Editor:
Hi Fillmore!
By the time you get this the scoping meeting regarding the Fillmore Works specific plan (AKA Superfund business& industrial park) will have passed. You may have missed the notice of preparation invitation but you received it via this paper a few weeks ago. I am in hopes that many people came out to give ideas and feed back on the project. Just today I received the December National Geographic and one of the articles in it is about…you guessed it! Superfund sites (p.129). We have one, so what to do with it now? I am still not sure putting people to work on top of it is the best idea we could come up with and what we want to be known for. If you would still like to give feed back send your ideas to Kevin McSweeney at city hall so they can be documented and researched. I am told there will be work shops in the future that the public can attend regarding all the. Thanks for your time once again,
Kathy Pace

 


 
Letters to the Editor
November 6, 2014

To the Editor:
On October 6, 2014, the Fillmore Historical Museum received a very generous donation from the Fillmore Lions Club. On behalf of the Board of Directors and the members of the Historical Museum we would like to thank them for their continuing support of the Museum and its programs. The Museum exists and has continued to operate because of the farsighted support of many organizations and members of the community who give of their time and money. We thank the Lions for their recent gift and invite all members of our community to visit the Museum. We are at 340 Main St. in the Rancho Sespe Bunkhouse next door to the 1887 Southern Pacific Depot. We invite groups for tours or individuals who just want to wander through and learn about the history of Fillmore, Piru, Bardsdale and Sespe.
Thank You
Martha Gentry
President, Fillmore Historical Museum

 

Click here for Attractions Spa website


 
Letters to the Editor
October 30, 2014

To the Editor:
The Rotary Club of Fillmore and Fillmore FFA Boosters would like to thank the community for coming out to support the Saturday, October 18th Casino Night. The proceeds raised will go towards supporting our local youth. We would like to acknowledge our "High Roller" sponsors: Quality Ag, Harrison's Industries, KLS, Aleshire & Wynder, and Beylik Farms. Our table sponsors: Water Art Design, Valley Tractor, Richardson Ranches, Ventura County Deputy Sheriff's Association, Titan Tactical, RMP services, Otto & Sons Nursery, Ag Rx, Agurie Financial-Insurance, Keith & Sandy Gurrola, W. L. Morris, Farm Credit West, Fillmore Rentals, Murphey Pump & Well, Palmer Ranches, Jan Marholin, and Edward Jones. Thank you to those business and individuals who donated to the silent auction: Dave & Diane Wareham, Ritter Brothers & Driscoles Berries, Joe & Ruth Ricards, Old Fashion Country Butcher, Otto & Sons Nursery, Shooters Paradise, Oak Tree Gun Club, Scott and Laura Beylik, Garmon's, Valley Tractor, Elkins Ranch Golf Course, Margaret's Cocina, Starbucks, Adrian Garcia, Chevron, Ventura County Fire Fighters, Wayne Noblett, State Farm, Vallarta, La Cabanna, Genisis Hair Design, Mimstar. Cindy Blatt, Adrian Palazurlos, and Bobbie Rodrick. We also thank our guest dealers: Joe Aguirre, Terri Aguirre, Dave Wareham, Brian Richmond, Manual Minarjes, Tim Gurrola, Laura Beylik, RJ Stump, Bob Godiaz, Frank Carrillo, Clark Johnson, Kyle Wilson, Nettie Farrar, and Bill Herrera. Also a special thank you to Laura and Rigo Landeros for the preparation of the evenings food and to any one we may have missed. We hope to see everyone at next years Casino Night having fun while continuing to support our Fillmore Youth.
Scott Beylik, Fillmore FFA Boosters, president Sean Morris, Rotary Club of Fillmore, president

 
Letters to the Editor
October 23, 2014

To the Editor:
I’ll be endorsing Lucy Rangel for Fillmore Unified School District Board. Lucy has given a lifetime of service to Fillmore as an elementary school teacher. She has served on the School Board for one term, under less than optimal conditions. With the recent hiring of the new Superintendent and with new leadership I believe a second term in office is warranted for Lucy. She has intuitional knowledge which will now be valued; she has spent her life’s work educating kids. She truly cares about Fillmore Unified School District. For these reasons and others, she will get my vote and support.
Steve Conaway

To the Editor:
Dear Fillmore / Piru Citizens,
I would like to take this opportunity to make it known that the Carrillo and Bobby McLain families wholeheartedly endorse Lucy Rangel for FUSD Board of Education, and hope you will as well.
Throughout the last four years I have personally witnessed Lucy fight relentlessly for our kids. She has proven that her main concern is, and will continue to be, what is best for the students of FUSD.
Despite the many laws and regulations she must adhere to, Lucy never takes the easy way out. Although she is only one vote of the many on the board, I have watched her continually fight to make sure every voice and concern is heard.
My dad, Hank Carrillo, served proudly on the FUSD Board of Education for eighteen years and Lucy emanates the same integrity and moral character that he did serving our schools. I know if he were here he would be writing this letter himself.
Lucy is a woman who loves this community and our schools and we would be lucky to have her on our School Board for the next four years.
Sincerely,
Lori McLain

To the Editor and the General Public:
Recent publications and social networking have been disappointing to many; thus, I have been encouraged by individuals who know me to respond and clarify what I am about. I have no intention of bashing or comparing myself to other candidates. My focus is on communicating what I am about. It is unfortunate that some have decided to judge my performance as a board member without taking the time to actually attend meetings to know what I stand for.
My passion for providing the best education for our children has never left me. If reelected to serve a second term, I will continue to advocate for our children and grandchildren. I have spent a lifetime working hard to improve the education we provide through our public schools, a place where my entire family has received an excellent education. My focus will not change; and I will continue on the path to best serve the children attending our local schools.
Thank you to those who have supported me in the past when we have faced difficult times, to those who speak out on passionate subjects and point out things we can improve on, and finally, to those who support moving forward to make FUSD a place we can all be proud of.
In closing I want my community to understand that I do listen and I do care. I hope that those of you who know me will remember what I stand for, and what I have fought for. I have worked hard for what is best for our students and staff; and I have personally struggled with past decisions as I am only one vote. My values and beliefs have not changed because I hold a seat on the Board. I have been optimistic about Fillmore’s future once our board finally reached majority decisions to make positive changes and move forward.
Thank you and I hope to be able to continue to serve the most important piece of our future, our children.
Lucy Rangel, Board Member

To the Editor,
Good morning Fillmore,
The fall has come and now we the neighbors get a break from all the disruptions that the Chevron superfund site throws at us. As you may have read in the V.C. star it’s all cleaned up and things are great! Yah right. Well now the big issue is what to do with this superfund site. After talking with many people I have learned many things. Chevron is not forth coming in there information many times, EPA with holds some information, some council members ignore your meeting request or are willing to bully you into there way of thinking , government officials know what is going on but have little to help and some people really think this is a good idea.
Why do I care what Chevron does on their property. First as a resident adjacent (about 300 ft) to the property I would like not to have building for the next 20 years behind me, yes it may take them up to 20 years to complete according to the specific plan. I do not want a bike path that leads form their site on to 3rd St which is currently a dead end street, I do not want buildings up to 60 feet tall looking over me into my neighbors house and, I do not want Fillmore to be known as a community with a superfund site who thinks the risk of people working on the site to get more money for our community is more important than the health of those workers or the health of the community. I do not want Fillmore to go into this plan knowing( and they do) there may be legal problems later and hoping that our one attorney will be able to match Chevrons Law firm I’m guessing they have some where in law suits that could cost our community money we could use for the residents of this community. The list could go on and on but I will spare you my boring opinions. Now I am wondering what you want.
The date for the Scoping meeting and Notice of Preparation is currently set for November 18th in the senior center at 6p.m.(subject to change) This is where Chevron will tell the community there plans and the council and planning commission my or may not be present. It is a meeting that you the community may let Chevron know what you think of their plan. I am told there will be other opportunities for the community to do this as well. I hope if you have an opinion on this you will come to the meeting or you can take a flash drive to the planning department ant time you want and have them down load you the specific plan submitted. It is very interesting to read and see what has not been discussed with neighbors and their opinions or concerns on some of the plans ideas.
The remediation and redevelopment meeting for this month has been changed to Monday October 27th 5:30 @ senior center.
Thank you again for your time,
Kathy Pace

 
Letters to the Editor
October 16, 2014

To the Editor:
Fillmore Voters, The School Administration has changed and so too must the existing Board. The three incumbents (though Prado doesn't want to admit he is an incumbent) have done a lousy job.
The test scores at just about every grade level are among the lowest (if not the lowest) in Ventura County and have been for a long time. Whose fault is that? It's said that you can't fire the "team" but you can sure fire the "coaches". And these three incumbents running for re-election must go.
Sean Morris, Michael Saviers and Scott Beylik represent the new "blood" and this school district Board sure needs that!
Remember too, the three incumbents (including Prado) didn't do a "darn thing" when Fillmore High English teacher, Ms. Fitzpatrick, decided in class to teach her students that stepping on the American Flag was an OK thing to do. Disgraceful doesn't begin to say how disrespectful this "lesson" was.
All 5 members, including those 3 incumbents, wanting us to re-elect them, didn't do a thing. When I spoke before them they just sat there "like bumps on a log". Yep, their time is up, they have got to go!
Yes, it really is a time for a change! Morris, Saviers and Beylik have my vote and I hope your vote too.
Charles Richardson
Fillmore voter

To the Editor:
Vote Carrie Broggie for City Council! When Carrie moved to Fillmore 4 years ago, she didn’t just move to Fillmore, no, she jumped right in, head first! She had a strong desire to get involved in her new community. She secured a position on the Film Commission, one she currently holds today as the Chairperson.
Vote Carrie Broggie for City Council! I support Carrie’s goals for Fillmore: attract more businesses; establish a relationship between the City and the School District; provide opportunities for our youth; economic recovery and, most important, public safety.
Vote Carrie Broggie for City Council! Carrie has 20 plus years working at the local county level of government. She has the knowledge of how things run and the experience of how to get things done. She can successfully maneuver her way thru government regulations.
One of the freedoms of our great country is the freedom to vote. Whether it’s absentee or at your precinct, please, join me and vote! Vote Carrie Broggie for City Council!
Sheila (McKendry) Duckett
Life-long Fillmore resident

 
Letters to the Editor
October 2, 2014

To the Editor:
Well the update from the last meeting is that Chevron showed some nice pictures of what the enormous hill adjacent to neighbors would look like with plants on it, but they forgot to add the big building that would be on top of the plants and hill. It was a nice try, but the hill needs to go. They also went over the clean up they recently did and how the contaminated dirt was not bad enough to be sent off in the red bins like last time but was loaded into regular trucks with tarps on top. I later told them, I hope they can keep the contaminated dirt off the road ways better than they did out of Pole Creek. Speaking of the clean up, what a stink!! Now you all know what I am talking about when I say they smell bad. People could smell it all the way down to the high school. The post cards that were sent out by the EPA were a nice thought but failed to mention that we may smell some thing along with the noise and dust you may see, so don’t freak out. Poor kids at the school adjacent to the site had to be kept in for some of the morning due to the odor.
The thing that really gets me today is that the Chevron rep went to a City Planning meeting knowing that they had found something days before of concern and was advised from the EPA not to report it until a plan could be made. Are you kidding me? The EPA that is supposed to have our well being in mind told them not to report it? What else have they not reported? I know they did not report the pole creek issue at the Thursday night senior center meeting until I said some thing. Then they did acknowledge it had happened.
It was nice of someone ( Chevron?) to put in the paper the latest update on the ATSDRS report that will help us all rest at ease that our health is safe. I am going to take a stab in the dark on this, but I think that it will state just that. Other wise it may not have been reported to us.
I have mentioned how I and other neighbors have felt that Chevron have deceived us and now it is sad for me to think they maybe doing it to our city officials as well.
My fear is that some are thinking that Chevron will help our town; I feel that they will bring only problems and we will be strapped with a superfund site if we annex them into our city.
I was told that you catch more bees with honey than vinegar and so here goes……Chevron thank you so much for the clean up, would you now please give the near by neighbors, school children and teachers some peace from all this noise, dust, and smell. Please go tell your company officials that this community cannot support this project from lack of funds (we are a poor community) lack of water (we are in a drought) and lack of support form those who will be impacted by the most. Now let’s see what happens with that honey. 
There will not be a meeting this month since we are waiting for the ATSDRS report findings to come out and to be reported on.
If you do wish to give ideas as to what YOU would like over on the superfund site such as open space (what it currently zoned for), solar farm, Business Park and how you envision them to look like send the ideas to Kevin McSweeney in City Hall so they can be documented. Also if there are reports you would like to see done to see if this is a good idea or envormental concerns send those to him as well so they can be added to the scoping meeting documents. The hope is to have the scoping meeting in November. I hope any one who has an opinion comes and voices it.
Thank you,
Kathy Pace

***

To the Editor:
Thank you to the Fillmore Unified Teachers’ Association for sponsoring the Fillmore Unified School Board Candidates Forum held Wednesday, September 24th at the Fillmore Middle School library. I offer special thanks to Sandra Butts and Janey Munoz for organizing the forum. It is unfortunate that it was not better attended. In his gentle, inimitable style, Scott Lee did an excellent job moderating. Each of the six candidates obviously consider the education of our young people to be of prime importance and expressed good ideas for accomplishing this goal. I must applaud Board member Dave Wilde’s candor about his frustrations with the preceding administration.
After careful consideration for what would be best for our District and the education of our students, I have decided to endorse Scott Beylik, Sean Morris and Lucy Rangel. Scott, Sean, and Lucy come from different backgrounds which together represents a rich life experience on which to base decisions. Scott and Sean are businessmen who have expertise in prioritizing funding. Lucy is a former teacher who has a good understanding of curriculum. I believe each is honest, hard-working and possess excellent communication skills. I am sure that these candidates could work well and respectfully with each other.
Mary Ford
Fillmore

***

To the Editor:
The city of Fillmore is indeed fortunate to have a wonderfully talented woman, Carrie Broggie, running for election to its city council. Carrie is a longtime colleague of mine having joined the district attorney’s office in 1993 as a legal management assistant. She has been given increasingly responsible and difficult assignments since that time and consistently exceeded expectations. Her quick grasp of complex matters, ability to reduce them to easily understood concepts, her strong people skills and work ethic made her a vital and highly respected member of my management team. She continues to excel in this position under current District Attorney Greg Totten.
Carrie’s expertise is broad and includes having helped handle fiscal issues, legislation, employment matters and relationships with other agencies and officials to mention just a few. Most importantly, Carrie is a person of unquestioned integrity whose word is her bond. She possesses the courage of her convictions and, a sometimes elusive quality in public life, the ability to put personal interest behind what is best for the public.
I wholeheartedly recommend Carrie for election to the council. She will bring not only needed wisdom and dignity to the position but humility and grace.
Respectfully submitted,
Michael Bradbury

 
Letters to the Editor
September 25, 2014

To the Editor:
Well the update from the last meeting is that Chevron showed some nice pictures of what the enormous hill adjacent to neighbors would look like with plants on it, but they forgot to add the big building that would be on top of the plants and hill. It was a nice try, but the hill needs to go. They also went over the clean up they recently did and how the contaminated dirt was not bad enough to be sent off in the red bins like last time but was loaded into regular trucks with tarps on top. I later told them, I hope they can keep the contaminated dirt off the road ways better than they did out of Pole Creek. Speaking of the clean up, what a stink!! Now you all know what I am talking about when I say they smell bad. People could smell it all the way down to the high school. The post cards that were sent out by the EPA were a nice thought but failed to mention that we may smell some thing along with the noise and dust you may see, so don’t freak out. Poor kids at the school adjacent to the site had to be kept in for some of the morning due to the odor.
The thing that really gets me today is that the Chevron rep went to a City Planning meeting knowing that they had found something days before of concern and was advised from the EPA not to report it until a plan could be made. Are you kidding me? The EPA that is supposed to have our well being in mind told them not to report it? What else have they not reported? I know they did not report the pole creek issue at the Thursday night senior center meeting until I said some thing. Then they did acknowledge it had happened.
It was nice of someone ( Chevron?) to put in the paper the latest update on the ATSDRS report that will help us all rest at ease that our health is safe. I am going to take a stab in the dark on this, but I think that it will state just that. Other wise it may not have been reported to us.
I have mentioned how I and other neighbors have felt that Chevron have deceived us and now it is sad for me to think they maybe doing it to our city officials as well.
My fear is that some are thinking that Chevron will help our town; I feel that they will bring only problems and we will be strapped with a superfund site if we annex them into our city.
I was told that you catch more bees with honey than vinegar and so here goes……Chevron thank you so much for the clean up, would you now please give the near by neighbors, school children and teachers some peace from all this noise, dust, and smell. Please go tell your company officials that this community cannot support this project from lack of funds (we are a poor community) lack of water (we are in a drought) and lack of support form those who will be impacted by the most. Now let’s see what happens with that honey. 
There will not be a meeting this month since we are waiting for the ATSDRS report findings to come out and to be reported on.
If you do wish to give ideas as to what YOU would like over on the superfund site such as open space (what it currently zoned for), solar farm, Business Park and how you envision them to look like send the ideas to Kevin McSweeney in City Hall so they can be documented. Also if there are reports you would like to see done to see if this is a good idea or envormental concerns send those to him as well so they can be added to the scoping meeting documents. The hope is to have the scoping meeting in November. I hope any one who has an opinion comes and voices it.
Thank you,
Kathy Pace

***

To the Editor:
Girl Members and Adult Volunteers Alike Benefit
For many, a sit-upon, a round of Make New Friends, or fly-up wings may not carry any meaning, but to thousands of girls who are now adults throughout the central coast, these prompts bring back warm, fun memories more valuable than silver and gold as the song goes.
And, so it goes… another school year begins and with it brings another need or opportunity for a mom, a dad, a guardian, a grandma, or those with special skills to raise their hand to become a Girl Scout volunteer. The benefits are tremendously fulfilling to both girls and those who volunteer.
How else does a girl have access to fun adventures like learning about robotics, Being A Friend First to prevent bullying, or spending a weekend of outdoor orienteering, and so much more?
At Girl Scouts of California’s Central Coast, we serve over 10,000 girls from Ventura County to Santa Cruz County. We want to reach more girls than ever before, but in order to do that, we need more volunteers.
Girl Scouts is making the world a better place while making a lasting impression in the lives of both its volunteers and girls members. Demonstrating this, recent Girl Scout research shows that 94 percent of Girl Scout volunteers and 97 percent of girl members believe Girl Scouts provides them with new, fun and exciting experiences.
Locally, our volunteers had this to say about what excited them about becoming a Girl Scout leader: “I had an opportunity to not only be a positive influence on my daughter and other girls in the troop, but that I could be an intimate part of watching them grow as leaders and amazing young women.” “I like outdoors and teaching [girls] self-sufficiency.” “Bringing the program to my daughter, who’s not into sports, gave her an activity that would help her grow as a person.”
It’s easy to register, training is provided, and we have girls waiting...ready to explore in a judgment-free space that is cooperative and encouraging. And, so it goes…that we again ask our communities to support girls and help them explore, imagine, and be amazing. To join or volunteer, please visit www.girlscouts.org/join.
Karen Skole
Chief Operating Officer
Girl Scouts of California’s Central Coast
800-822-2427

 
Letters to the Editor
September 11, 2014

To the Editor:
Dear Members of the Fillmore Community,
I am writing to give you an update on the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry’s (ATSDR’s) work at the Pacific Coast Pipeline Site. ATSDR’s goal is to protect the health of the people of Fillmore. To do this, ATSDR is investigating the possibility that contact with soil from the site could contribute to human health effects. Contact with soil from the site may occur by:
• Breathing dust in the air or;
• Direct contact with the soil after proposed redevelopment is finished.
We are focused on these health issues because community members voiced concerns about them and because data exists to study them.
We visited Fillmore twice in early 2013 and met with a local youth group, the Mayor, the city planning office, the county health department, and others. We also toured the site with the Chevron project manager. At that time we heard from community members and city staff and leaders about their health concerns, and their concerns about Chevron’s proposed redevelopment plans.
Since 2013 we have met with the EPA project manager to learn about the soil cleanup process. We requested, received, and reviewed data from EPA and Chevron about soil and air contamination at the site. We have reviewed air monitoring methods and soil cleanup techniques put in place by Chevron and overseen by EPA. We have reviewed the current draft of Chevron’s redevelopment plans for the site.
The ATSDR project team has written a draft report that our agency will release for public comment. This report is now going through an established, thorough internal review process with ATSDR technical experts and leadership. This review process ensures that we use the best science to draw conclusions about the potential health risks at the site and that our recommendations will help protect the health of the community.
We know that Fillmore community members are eager to hear about ATSDR’s findings. While we cannot say exactly when the draft report will be available, we look forward to sharing it with members of the Fillmore community. In addition to the draft report, we will publish a fact sheet that summarizes the key points and we will hold a public meeting in Fillmore to present our findings and answer questions. There will also be an opportunity to provide written comments and feedback during the report’s public comment period. When the report is released we will be happy to meet with interested community groups and leaders (for example, the Fillmore Works Community Focus Group, One Step a la Vez, and elected officials).
Thank you for your patience as we complete our draft report. If you have questions about our work, please contact Ben Gerhardstein (bgerhardstein@cdc.gov and 415.947.4316) or Jamie Rayman (jrayman@cdc.gov and 415.947.4318).
If you have immediate concerns about outdoor dust or odors from the site, please contact the Chevron Project Manager (661-632-1408) or the Ventura County Air Pollution Control District (805-654-2797).
Best regards,
CAPT Robert B. Knowles, M.S., REHS
Regional Director
Agency for Toxic Substances & Disease Registry, Region 9

***

To the Editor:
Girl Members and Adult Volunteers Alike Benefit
For many, a sit-upon, a round of Make New Friends, or fly-up wings may not carry any meaning, but to thousands of girls who are now adults throughout the central coast, these prompts bring back warm, fun memories more valuable than silver and gold as the song goes.
And, so it goes… another school year begins and with it brings another need or opportunity for a mom, a dad, a guardian, a grandma, orthose with special skills to raise their hand to become a Girl Scout volunteer. The benefits are tremendously fulfilling to both girls and those who volunteer.
How else does a girl have access to fun adventures like learning about robotics, Being A Friend First to prevent bullying, or spending a weekend of outdoor orienteering, and so much more?
At Girl Scouts of California’s Central Coast, we serve over 10,000 girls from Ventura County to Santa Cruz County. We want to reach more girls than ever before, but in order to do that, we need more volunteers.
Girl Scouts is making the world a better place while making a lasting impression in the lives of both its volunteers and girls members. Demonstrating this, recent Girl Scout research shows that 94 percent of Girl Scout volunteers and 97 percent of girl members believe Girl Scouts provides them with new, fun and exciting experiences.
Locally, our volunteers had this to say about what excited them about becoming a Girl Scout leader: “I had an opportunity to not only be a positive influence on my daughter and other girls in the troop, but that I could be an intimate part of watching them grow as leaders and amazing young women.” “I like outdoors and teaching [girls] self-sufficiency.” “Bringing the program to my daughter, who’s not into sports, gave her an activity that would help her grow as a person.”
It’s easy to register, training is provided, and we have girls waiting...ready to explore in a judgment-free space that is cooperative and encouraging. And, so it goes…that we again ask our communities to support girls and help them explore, imagine, and be amazing. To join or volunteer, please visitwww.girlscouts.org/join.
Karen Skole
Chief Operating Officer
Girl Scouts of California’s Central Coast

 
Letters to the Editor
August 28, 2014

To the Editor
Good Day to you Fillmore.
I am here once again to give you a little feed back about the Chevron superfund project A.K.A Pacific Coast Pipe Line project. I was unable to make it to some of the Remediate and Redevelopment meetings in June and July but during the June site tour my substitute told me that there was discussion on the odors that were emitted and there was discussion about the height of the hill area directly adjacent to the Island View Street neighbors. Chevron was also told that some neighbors are considering moving and they (Chevron) did their best surprised look at such a statement. July’s meeting neither I nor my substitute were able to attend so I cannot comment on that meeting. Chevron has reported that the “clean up” work is done that the last thing they will be doing is installing the sparging unit and then they will be finished. So as I see it they could be done soon and stop all the continued stress brought on by more Earth work that building will bring again to neighbors.
Well this week some of the neighbors received a flyer from EPA stating that they (Chevron) hit yet another snag while digging and contaminated soil has been found again, will it ever end? At one of the Thursday night meetings months ago the EPA told us that the site is clean until they find stuff then it is no longer considered clean and must be reworked, so this will mean that as long as they are over there working we have the possibility of them hitting more and more stuff (debris pits, contaminated soil, etc). A Chevron rep told me that they have no idea where all the areas are where things are buried, so this problem I see as an on going problem.
Most of you know that California is in a 3-year drought and we have most recently been told by the state that the 20% recommended water reduction is now being required of water companies, so now how does this affect our city or this project? I feel that if we the citizens are going to be asked to do this reduction then the city should also follow suit by looking into how much water this project Chevron is proposing will take from our city’s resources. We as a city do not get our water from any other source so we currently are self-sufficient but our water levels are low from what they normally are at this time of year (but not as low as others in the county). I feel that even if Chevron does pay for our water for their project it is water we may want or need if things don’t get better. Our city already has houses that are being built and more scheduled right behind them along with another dollar-something store now in the works. All these projects use a lot of water. Why would we think about the HUGE project like the one Chevron is proposing if this may become a problem for us down the line?
From what I have been told the site is currently zoned open-space in Ventura County, so I may be wrong on this but if this is true then from what I understand nothing could be built there unless it was on the list of SOAR-approved projects or goes through a process which would require the zoning to be changed and go to a SOAR vote. So for those who worry that Ventura County would get tax money or build a prison, as I was told could happen if we don’t jump on the Chevron wagon, it looks like that currently would not even be an option for them at this time. Could it change? Yes, the world is always changing as is the ever disturbing hillside we the neighbors, teachers and students look at, listen to and smell every day.
The scoping meetings have been moved yet one more time so look for it to happen maybe in November. During this meeting you the public will have a chance to voice your opinions on the project.
I would like to thank the one and only city council member who had a meeting with me even though I gave them all my number and requested a meeting.
Thank you again for letting me bore you once more with this but my hope is to keep you all in the loop of this neighbor’s view on this proposed project.
Kathy Pace
Fillmore

 
Letters to the Editor
August 20, 2014

To the Editor:
THANK YOU!
I hope this is the best forum to take the opportunity to thank so many of you for all the kind words, prayers and help as I dealt with my rattlesnake bite. I can’t put into words how grateful I am to all of you who visited, called, sent cards, made contact on social media and continue to give me well wishes when we cross paths. The community outpouring of support was beyond anything I could have imagined. I spent 5 days in ICU and another 9 in a regular hospital room. I was given over 100 vials of anti-venom, which looking back sounds like a lot. Two months later I feeling 90% back to normal. I want to thank Los Robles Hospital, the doctors and especially the nurses who provided my care. I want to thank my family especially my sister who got me in touch with a snake venom specialist out of North Carolina, Dr. Sean Bush who helped the team of doctors with my care. Thank you to Sheriff Jeff Dean & his staff, Fire Chief Rigo Landeros and department members, and Ventura County Sheriff Search & Rescue Captain Rick Neal & team for their support during my recovery. Like so many have said before me, it’s the people of this community who make it such an honor to serve as a State Farm Agent, Assistant Chief, and as member of the Ventura County Search & Rescue Team. Life changes fast! Enjoy and cherish the relationships and people around you. Thanks again to all of you.
Sincerely,
Bill Herrera

 
Letters to the Editor
July 14, 2014

To the Editor:
Our 4-H Club, Sespe 4-H, had a great season at the Fair this year and we are very proud of our group! Tuesday night Clinton Staples won grand champion barrow, competing against all the barrows entered in the Fair. This included all 4-H, FFA and Grange Clubs. This is a nice win for Clinton. The following day another of our members, Jazmin Olvera, won supreme grand champion swine!! This means she was the 4-H champion first, then went into the champion drive to compete against FFA and grange champions and won against those to become the Supreme Grand Champion which is the highest placing hog in the Fair Jazmin is one of the hardest working, most deserving winners we had ever had. This year she served as Teen Leader of our swine group, and has been an excellent example for our younger members to learn from. Jazmin will be a senior at Fillmore High School next year and plans to take one more pig to the Ventura County Fair. Our club has 20 swine project members and out of those, six of them won their weight class and competed in the Champion drive. Very exciting for a lot of young members to get that far!! Our club also won 1st place for their Fair Banner that was made by members Jazmin Olvera, Toni Ruiz and Olivia Hunt-Borrell. (I have a photo of the banner!). We also won all classes in showmanship: Daniel Torres, Sr showmanship, Jazmin Zavala, Jr showmanship, Isabella Vaca, novice showmanship, Gina Meraz 2nd place, novice showmanship, and Ari Osegueda, 2nd place jr. showmanship. Aliza Estrella also won 1st place showmanship in primary pygmy goats, 2nd place in her confirmation class.
Thanks to the city of Fillmore who continues its support of the 4-H clubs by providing space for our pigs, goats, lambs and steers to be raised by dedicated youth of Fillmore. Having this area is giving the 4-h youth the opportunity to experience agriculture with animals at a younger age and we try to make the most of this area provided to raise healthy animals and do a good job showing them!
Best Regards,
Sue Maynard
Patrick Zavala
Lyn Hicks
Danny Torres
Karen Torres
Richard Perez
Swine Leaders, Sespe 4-H

 
Letters to the Editor
July 31, 2014

To the Editor:
On behalf of myself, James Cummings and Pam Weed, we wanted to publically thank the staff and the members of Body Image Fitness that put on their annual power-lifting contest to benefit the Fillmore Middle School Athletic Dept and the kids we serve. Tony Sr. and Tony Jr. and the whole crew threw around some serious weight on Saturday and in the process helped us financially for which we are grateful. Body Image Fitness Center is a true local business that puts their clients and community first and if you’re thinking about getting in shape you couldn’t find a better place here in town.
Thanks again to all who participated and helped us out.
Dave Mac Donald
PE Teacher
Fillmore Middle School

 
Letters to the Editor
July 17, 2014

To the Editor:
What was it like to grow up on the grounds of the Fillmore Refinery? How large was the oil industry here? Visit the Fillmore Museum at 340 Main Street (In the two story bunkhouse building) to see photos and information regarding the Refinery, the local oil industry and its historic relationship to our city.
We are open Tuesday , Wednesday, and Friday from 9 a.m. to 12 noon and 1 p.m.-4 p.m., Thursday from 1p.m.- 4 p.m. and Saturday from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.
The museum also contains hundreds of photos and stories of local pioneers, farmers and businesses.
Martha Gentry, Executive Director

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To the Editor:
Dear Parent, Teachers & Community Volunteers:
It’s that time of year…….REGISTRATION TIME!!!!!
If you are willing to volunteer to help with registration, please let me know. Email me at blemons@fillmore.k12.ca.us . Let me know which day(s) and what hours you can help!! The more, the merrier !
Registration is Thursday, July 31st (11th & 12th graders) and Friday, August 1st (9th & 10th graders) from 9 – 3:30. If you are able to help ANY or BOTH days , I would really appreciate it. It will be a great time to meet our new principal, Tom Ito. Thank you very much!
Barbara Lemons

 
Letters to the Editor
July 10, 2014

To the Editor:
Last year, the relatively new executive director of the Ventura County Transportation Commission (VCTC), Darren Kettle, arbitrarily decided the Fillmore & Western Railway (F&W) wasn't paying enough toward maintenance costs on the county-owned railroad line. This was in spite of the fact there was a long-standing contractual agreement that had been amicably made by both parties and specified those responsibilities in detail. Instead of trying to privately discuss his concerns, Mr. Kettle chose to publicly make an issue of it and end a 20-plus year relationship between the parties had always been extremely cordial.
I can attest to the positive and productive nature of that relationship. I was the tourist railroad professional who was hired in 1993 to transform what had been exclusively a movie train operation serving Hollywood into a passenger railroad offering rides to the public. I had the pleasure of working with then-VCTC executive director Ginger Gherardi and her wonderful staff, all of whom were dedicated to doing things that would benefit then and future generations of Venturans. What is going on today is a far cry from those halcyon days. The present VCTC is an embarrassment.
Dave and Tresa Wilkinson of the F&W – who I know to be very reasonable people – were not close-minded when Mr. Kettle ignored common professional courtesy and opted to take a confrontational approach. They were always willing to negotiate. They even publicly offered to assume all of the maintenance costs, entirely relieving the VCTC of what was Mr. Kettle's original stated problem. This was not acceptable. Solving the stated problem was not good enough. The VCTC opted, instead, to arbitrarily cancel the railroad's track lease and took actions to evict it.
If the railroad goes away, the entire burden of maintenance will fall on the VCTC. How is this a solution? Or was that ever the real problem?
The VCTC or Mr. Kettle, apparently, wants the F&W gone – for unspecified reasons – even though this would be to the detriment of the economies of cities of Fillmore and Santa Paula. Closing the railroad puts dozens of people out of work immediately. It also economically impacts the County of Ventura in ways that can't be determined now, but will be slowly revealed over time. More jobs will certainly be cut by local businesses in the near future as tourism in the Heritage Valley region shrinks. Local businesses and residents that planned their finances and assumed debt on the assumption of a certain income level may find themselves in default. People's real-world concerns have been ignored by the VCTC every step of the way.
I have been disappointed that in the many months this issue has been dragging on, no one in government at the cities or the county has vigorously protested this situation and demanded that the VCTC seriously negotiate a solution that benefits all parties. Maybe everyone was just hopeful that rationality would prevail and at some point this situation would be resolved. Actions always speak louder than words and it is now abundantly clear that the VCTC is not willing to negotiate – period – and never was. They either have a hidden agenda of some sort as an organization, or the VCTC executive director has gotten so far into a "pissing match" of his own making that he is now bound and determined to "win" at any cost – including misrepresenting truths – the good of the county be damned. Neither is acceptable.
Many questions come to mind: Why haven't leaders at all levels of city and county government been looking out for the best interests of their constituents? Why have the county supervisors and the VCTC board of directors let their employee behave like a common bully when people's livelihoods are at stake? Why hasn't anyone demanded to know – in detail – exactly what the VCTC plans to do with the property in the future, if its railroad use is being terminated? If a "better use" for the property is contemplated, how much will this cost the county to develop and where will that money come from in these tough economic times? Since the VCTC's reasons for permitting this situation to exist in the first place aren't publicly known, have they been making decisions behind closed doors in violation of open meeting laws? Is there any sort of accountability in Ventura County for actions by government agencies that are detrimental to the best interests of its residents? And finally, why hasn't the press been asking these questions; is investigative journalism dead in Ventura County?
Looking from the outside at this sad situation, I'm seeing elected officials who may need to be replaced and a minimum of one government employee who should be shown the door. Public servants who aren't serving the best interests of the public are useless. Bullies only prevail when good people do nothing.
Larry Jensen
Gunnison, Colo.

 
Letters to the Editor
July 3, 2014

To the Editor:
The Fillmore Historical Museum is happy to report the recent receipt of a $4,500.00 grant from Chevron Corporation for programming , accessioning and display purposes in support of the Fillmore Incorporation Centennial Events. The Museum is a 100% volunteer organization and appreciates the support given by businesses and individuals in the community. If you should want to know more about the history of Fillmore, Piru, Sespe and Bardsdale please come to visit your local Museum.
Our goal is to preserve and display the history of our four local communities. Visit the museum to see artifacts from Fillmore’s early days including many pictures of the city as it was 100 years ago. The Museum is open Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday from 9-12 and 1-4, and on Thursday afternoon from 1-4. We are also open from 10:00 to 3:00 on Saturday.
Please join us on July 10th at the Museum’s Southern Pacific Depot for a reception from 4:00 pm until 6 pm jointly hosted by Chevron Corporation and the Fillmore Historical Museum to celebrate the 100 years since incorporation.
Martha Gentry
Executive Director

 
Letters to the Editor
June 26, 2014

To the Editor:
Update from last months Chevron meeting. We were shown the pictures again of their ideas for the site. But there was a new idea that they talked about. One of their ideas is to have a solar farm on the site. There was discussion on how this may be a better option for not only the near by neighbors but the town as well. Solar panels could be put in sooner, which would cause less disruption to neighbors along with not the height of buildings that are not wanted in some areas. I have talked with some of my near by neighbors and they all have said that if they HAD to have anything then they would rather have solar panels. Solar panels would not be exposing large numbers of people to possible toxins on the site which is a superfund site and always will be a superfund site. In case of emergency an idea was talked over by some about hooking the solar panels up to the Fillmore water supply. This would provide emergency power to keep water available, which I think would be a great thing for Fillmore since Chevron keeps saying that they want to benefit Fillmore. I asked Chevron and others in an email on this but did not receive any feed back form Chevron but another representative of theirs replied that Chevron will need to see if this is profitable for them for it to really be considered. In the email I also asked if it would be possible to see the names of prospective businesses who have an interest in the industrial site, because I still belive no one will want such a poor location of a site for business on top of a superfund site. I was told that Chevron reps would need to be asked first to see if they wanted to give this information or if they were using non-discloser clauses. Interesting? This week anyone who did not get a chance to look at Chevrons plans last month can do so Thursday the 26th from 4:30-5:30 pm at the senior center. The committee only will then leave to do a site tour. Please look for your opportunity to voice you opinion if you have one during a city council meeting that will be announced in the Fillmore Gazette soon.
Thank you for your time,
Kathy Pace

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To the Editor:
A grateful & appreciated thank you to the Piru EMT’s who came to my rescue in the wee hours of Saturday morning. And a thank you to all emergency personnel.
Thank you again.
J. Council

 
Letters to the Editor
June 19, 2014

To the Editor:
"The staff and families at Fillmore Middle School would like to publicly thank Moon Valley Nursery in Fillmore for generously providing beautiful trees and greenery for the FMS promotion ceremony on June 12th. FMS had 230 students participate in the ceremony and over 1000 guests attended the promotion celebration. We wish our promoting 8th graders good luck as they continue their education at Fillmore High School"
Scott Carroll
Principal, Fillmore Middle School

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To The Editor:
I would like to say thanks to all of the following who so graciously donated vehicles, space, time and effort for the 2014 May Festival Parade: Sonshine Pre-School, Super Seal and Stripe, William L. Morris, Deputy Leo Vasquez and the Explorers, Ron Smith and the Boyscouts, Darlene Holmes, Amber Chewning, RJ Stump, Tyler Stump, Kyle Popp Lynn Cole and Gabi Farrar. The parade would not have been possible without all of you and your help. Lynn and Gabi THANK YOU for stepping up to fill in at the last minute. Thank you to the Citizens of Fillmore for enduring the road closures, especially those who live on Shiells Drive and surrounding streets, for putting up with all of the traffic and no parking on parade day; to all of the parade entrants for your patience and cooperation. Thank You So Very Much!!!
Sincerely,
Joni Stump
Following is a categorical listing of the parade winners:
Floats: 1st Place Perces Kenpo Karate
2nd Place Fillmore Raiders Cheer
3rd Place Ventura County Search and Rescue
Walking Groups: 1st Place Luv 2 Dance
2nd Place Zumba Studio
3rd Place ACS Flmr/Piru Relay for Life
Cars: 1st Place Nosotros Car Club
2nd Place Ventura County Model A Club
Equestrian: 1st Place Charros De Paloma
2nd Place Rancho Arroyo
Novelty: 1st Place Fillmore So Cal Bears
2nd Place Calli McKeown Ultimate Grand Supreme and Jazzy Rivera Queen
3rd Place Scooter Crue - Brad and Tayler Balades
Other: 1st Place Thunderball Youth Team
2nd Place Cash Ryder
3rd Place Cinco de Mayo Court
Twirlers: 1st Place Pleasant Valley Hi Steppers
For those of you who were unable to attend the awards ceremony immediately following the parade, your award may be picked up in the Chamber Office during normal business hours. Please give the Chamber a call to let them know when you will be coming by, (805) 524-0351.

 
Letters to the Editor
June 12, 2014

To the Editor:
I dislike being labeled a "complainer" so am always reluctant to write letters of this nature. I have found in the past the best way to get something done is to let the public know what the problem is and who's job it is to resolve that problem. When an entity knows that not just one person, but many, are aware of something that needs correction they tend to sit up, take notice and hopefully do something about it.
Having lived in Fillmore for all of my seventy-nine years I consider Fillmore my home. I want to see it hopefully prosper, if not that, at least not back-slide. Thus I am especially aware of anything that could cost the City financially. I will never criticize unless I have an answer to back it up.
About three months ago I noticed the "rules and regulations" posted sign at the Three Rivers Skateboard Park was missing. Some of you are saying, "So what, it isn't obeyed anyhow." This is just the point, to my knowledge that sign is there to inform the users of the park of the dangers and how to minimize them. By having the sign in full view the city is not liable if someone gets hurt because of not adhering to those rules.
Now...... for about three months that I am aware of there has been no "warning sign," this could make the city liable in case of injury. I had concerns years ago, when the skateboard park was first constructed and saw the users were not complying with the rules. So I called the city attorney. He informed me that if there was a rules sign in place and the city did not monitor the park the for safety violations the city was not liable. This places the liability fully on the users.
Why didn't I bring the missing sign to the attention of the city.......I did, about one month ago. After being referred to the one in charge of "signs," he did remember that the sign was taken down because of excessive graffiti and he would have to dig it out and get a new one made. Dig it out? Sounds as though this was not high on the important things to do priority list. Well, that was over a month ago, still no "sign" and the city seems not too concerned about a liability suit......I am and that is why I informed all of you in hope that, if this is what it takes, to "shame" the city into correcting the matter.
Don't mess with Big John...
I ♥ Fillmore
John Heilman

 
Letters to the Editor
June 5, 2014

To the Editor:
As the summer heat and east winds pick up Chevron is busy applying more layers of lipstick to the stinking, toxic pig known as the Pacific Coast Pipeline Project, an EPA Superfund Site. This is the same swine that they plan to dress up as a commercial/industrial development they call “Fillmore Works.” It’s an offer our leaders must refuse.
Within the next year or so our city leaders will have to decide whether to seek approval to annex this stink hole into the city limits under the guise of “economic development.” The last I checked, the city still has a few hundred acres of prime light industrial/commercial zoned land along the 126 corridor. This land, which is flat and has easy access to water and other utilities and is away from homes and schools, sits vacant.
Why then, would the city need to take ownership of a permanently contaminated site (on County land) that has numerous other drawbacks? This site east of Pole Creek has an earthquake fault running right down the middle of it. The hillsides above it are part of an ancient landslide formation. It is within 20 yards of residences and San Cayetano School’s recreation area. The hillsides are a constant wildfire danger. There are issues with providing water and treating wastewater and, of course, it sits along the area of the Pole Creek channel and flooding is always a possibility.
The EPA has determined that this site will forever be contaminated to the point that no residences or schools could ever be built there. What about the future workers who could be putting in 50-hour work weeks for years? When they get sick from cancers or respiratory illnesses and they (and their lawyers) blame their ailments on the contamination at their worksite, the City of Fillmore will no doubt be held liable.
Chevron officials arrogantly expect our city to accept their sick pig of a site and welcome it into our home. Why on Earth would we be so foolish?
Art Sandford.
Fillmore

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To the Editor:
Yesterday, May 28, 2014, the Ventura Sheriff’s Department made a more than impressive showing of professionalism, fast response to a community need and effective team work that covered every possible area and produced a positive result.
One of the residents of El Dorado Estates was reported missing and they immediately whipped into action, getting out an all-points-bulletin to be on the alert for the at-risk senior citizen, searching the park thoroughly and even organizing a phone message program to advise Part residents to keep an eye out for Josephine Lorenz.
Her family would like to thank the Deputies involved, Dep. Martin, Dep. Ryerson, Dep. LeMar, Sgt. Sparks, Detective Almazan, Dan Amberian, Detective John Fox and the well-trained and highly effective Canine Unit that was brought into play and all of the others not here mentioned—you know who you are, although we do not. Without this great forum through the Gazette, we would have no way to personally thank all involved, starting with everyone in Fillmore who helped us, and ending with everyone is Ventura County who promptly lent a caring, competent and professional hand.
You all deserve accolades, and an eternal commendation for going beyond the call of duty to assist a family in distress. We will remember your amazing professionalism forever!
The Lorenz Family

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To the Editor
The Ebell Club has a long history of supporting the arts in Fillmore. The club has presented its members with a wide variety of dramatic and musical performances. It has contributed to the high school band and drama groups. And it has generously contributed to Sespe Players.
Those contributions over the years have enabled Sespe Players to purchase lighting equipment and set materials. And we have seen the faces of Ebell members in the audiences of our productions.
This week marks the last gathering of the Fillmore Ebell Club. Over the many years the members have spent countless hours together, dining, playing cards, catching up with dear friends and enjoying their programs. Longtime members have each served multiple times in the various positions of office. This is a truly unique organization that has done much for our community.
As Ebell disbands and distributes funds to the many deserving groups in Fillmore, once again Sespe Players is grateful for the donation.
Thank you again for all of the support, past and present. Fillmore will greatly miss the Ebell Club.
Sincerely,
Christine Villegas, Secretary Sespe Players