Letters to the Editor
July 31st, 2008

To the Editor:
Thank you to the Osaguera family for their condolences to me and my family; also for exposing the terrible results of meth to families. Thank you to the Gazette for printing the names of the thugs that got away with this crime. Your article about Nathan Osaguera was very thorough (and better than The Star’s). Thank you to my family, friends and Bret's friends for their support during these difficult times.
Mary Ann Godfrey,
Bret's Mom

To the Editor:
Re: From the family of Nathan Oceguera
It appears the meth problem in Fillmore has been out of control for quite some time. However, I don't think we can put the blame on the police, schools, city, etc. We have to take a close look at ourselves, as parents. Many parents run their children out of their homes when they discover they are abusing drugs repeatedly. They rid themselves of the problem, leaving the addicted child homeless, to steal and do whatever unthinkable things they do while under the influence. Wouldn't we be better of if we had them arrested? My son was murdered in this town in 2003. I have been told the person suspected of murdering him had been on a meth high for three days straight, without sleep. His parents had run him out of their home because they could no longer deal with him.
I sincerely feel for the Oseguera family because I know they are good people. I never knew the kind, caring Nathan. I only knew the Nathan that came to my home approximately eight years ago to tell me that he was going to shoot my son's head off. I only knew the Nathan who passed by my home after my son's death to point and laugh at me. As for the "trash talking", that is beneficial to no one. My family has had to endure it for almost five years. The Oseguera family should know there is light at the end of the tunnel. In prison, Nathan will be paying his debt to society, but more importantly, he will have the opportunity to ask for God's forgiveness and turn his life around. His family can visit him, write to him and hear his voice over the phone. That is more than the Godfrey family can do. That is more than I can do.
There is a young man in our community that spent several years incarcerated due to his involvement with drugs and gangs. He turned his life around and he tirelessly walks the streets of Fillmore offering help to anyone that wants it. He is associated with Victory Outreach. Any one wanting help might want to contact them. In the mean time, may God Bless us all.
Barbara A. Serrano
Peter Nick's mom

To the Editor:
The letter from David Reeves [07/17/08] was the most disgusting reading I have done in a long time. If you think you can pray the wrath of God on the city leadership (your quote) I would really like to know who the God you pray to is. That letter was so nasty and uncalled for.
For your information some of the existing council was not even on the council when this [rent control] was first discussed; it started so many years ago. If you don't know that you must not pay any attention to what goes on in Fillmore until it affects you or you are new here. My understanding when I was at the council meeting when this was finalized; the majority did not want rent control at the park.
And about the skate park I thought all citizens agreed we want to put our monies where our future lies. I firmly believe our future lies with our youth, therefore we need things to keep them busy so they will stay out of trouble. Idle hands promote trouble. As for your reply that we (senior citizens) didn’t have things like the children have now and we turned out alright, I hear that all the time and have even said it myself when I see a spoiled child But we live in a different world now so you need to quit being so mean-mouthed at someone you know nothing about. Being a senior myself I will admit times are hard for people on fixed incomes but they are hard on everyone so quit b----ing and be glad for the young people of this community. Some of the youth who fought for this skate park in the beginning are now adults going off to college. Tonight I will pray to Jesus and ask him to forgive you.
Shirley Spitler,

To the Editor:
This letter is in response to Mr. Brian Sipes letter addressing the City of Fillmore Water Recycling Plant.
Mr. Sipes makes outlandish statements and then asks questions like: “How can these things be
true?” and if they are true “this is a serious scandal for the City of Fillmore.” A good lesson in life to learn is that when a statement sounds hugely unrealistic it probably is.
For example Mr. Sipes writes: “Fillmore was given a guaranteed proposal for a more than adequate plant in 2002 for $13 Million, but the Fillmore City Council and staff chose to purchase a smaller plant for $43 Million in 2005.”
The $13 Million proposal was not “guaranteed.” The proposal did not provide Performance or Material Bonds or a written guarantee that the plant would meet the permit requirements for 20 years like American Water has provided to the City.
The proposal was not “more than adequate.” It was not complete, the plant was proposed to be between River Street and the Santa Clara River but no flood protection was included. It relied upon river discharge instead of recycling but did not remove all of the constituents as required in the NPDES permit. It did not include sewer service to the future Business Park and would commit the City to operating and maintaining a sewer lift station in perpetuity.
The proposal was for Sequential Batch Reactor technology that three Engineering firms recommended that the City not use because of reliability concerns and because the effluent is 10 times dirtier than the Membrane Bio Reactor plant the City is building.
When I spoke with the owner of one of the plants that this company has built he told me that the plant was experiencing premature corrosion, had insufficient redundancy so maintenance was difficult and a recent news paper article from that community described odors so bad local citizens said they couldn’t walk from their door to their car without being overwhelmed.
This same company made a $35 Million proposal to Santa Paula but later when they submitted an actual “guaranteed” bid the capital cost came out the same as their competitor: $56 Million.
The operating costs were the same as well. So much for the huge cost savings.
Mr. Sipes also states “Fillmore chose to not use the state revolving funds….at an increased cost to the Fillmore Sewer Rate Payers of $60 Million.” The fact is that the City Council chose to use tax exempt municipal bonds because they saved the rate payers $3.50 per month. The $60 Million savings Mr. Sipes is suggesting would be realized by future rate payers beginning 20 years from now. The City Council chose the financing that has the lowest monthly sewer rate for today’s rate payers and lowest overall present worth which is the true measure of the actual cost. The $60 Million savings is bogus.
Suffice it to say, the outlandish statements Mr. Sipes is referring to are not representative
of the real situation or a complete picture of the Fillmore Water Recycling Program.
If you have questions regarding our public infrastructure please send them to: Bert J. Rapp, P.E., Public Works Director at City Hall, 250 Central Avenue, Fillmore CA. 93015, or leave a message 24 hours a day at 524-1500 x 231 and he will address them in a future column.
Bert Rapp,
Public Works Director

To the Editor:
If you haven’t taken the time to use the various bike/walking paths located around Fillmore, you should. It is heart warming to see individuals, couples, friends and whole families enjoying the benefits of exercising and getting away from the city life. I will give you a few words of caution; stay on the right side as you would if you were in a car. Beware; there are a few bicycle riders that think this is a race track. They are completely silent coming up behind you and there is no warning they are near until they come swooshing by you at about twenty miles per hour. It is a little scary. I’m sure they would call out “Coming by” if they only knew how it unnerves a person. I am truly worried that people walking dogs or that have young children with them will wander into the ‘left lane’ at the wrong moment and be seriously injured. Recently, my dog and I were enjoying the path along the Sespe River. I wasn’t paying attention behind me and slowed down a fast rider, he cussed me out royally. I do wish they would use the streets for their speeding rather than the family paths. I never have been able to understand why people pay huge sums of money to buy a bicycle that is easy to pedal and then say they are doing it for the exercise. They could go to the second hand store, buy a junker with a rusty chain, no gears and get the same exercise in one fourth the time.
Kidding aside; I hope this article will make riders and walkers more aware of the ‘rules of the path,’ be more considerate of each other and it will be safer and more enjoyable for all.
Maybe a white line down the center would be a good idea to make us more aware. I give the City of Fillmore a double thumbs up on the bike/walking path projects. Tax payer’s money well spent to keep people exercising. My dog likes it too.
John Heilman,
73 year native and dog Cindy