Letters to the Editor
October 19, 2023

A Case of Bullying and Extortion?????

As reported in last week's edition of the Fillmore Gazette, your City Council approved a Resolution of Intent to transition from AtLarge to District Based Elections in response to a lawsuit which was filed against the city of Fillmore by Attorney Jason Dominguez of Druven PC, representing a “Resident of Fillmore.” This lawsuit claims this “Resident” is a member of a protected class and that the “AtLarge Election” system presently in place violates the California Voting Rights Act. This lawsuit will initially cost Fillmore $42,000 to hire a professional demographer service to draw the district lines but will also incur an initial cost of approximately $34,000 for Mr. Jason Dominguez’s services representing the “Resident of Fillmore.” Question: How much of that initial cost will be paid to the “Resident of Fillmore? Just something to think about. Which protected class could the “Resident of Fillmore” represent? Examples of protected traits include but are not limited to: Race and National Origin, Sex, Religious Beliefs, Age, Marital Status including same sex marriages, Sexual Orientation and Gender Identities, and Disabilities. A few facts to know: During the 2020 Census, Fillmore is reported to be greater than 70% Hispanic. Our current Fillmore Council is 60% Hispanic. Our Council, 5 members total, is represented by 3 males and 2 females. Religious Beliefs are now being trampled upon with unrelenting bigotry but not sure this is the protected class at issue here. Age is usually discriminated when it is a person 40 or more years old. So, that is not the issue. An important fact to know is that almost all of the cities in our immediate area have been pulled into this type of lawsuit. Some cities have spent money in the “Millions of dollars” trying to defend their AtLarge voting system. Our city is small in comparison to many. What could be the possible benefits of this type of change? How will we measure the outcome of this change? If we changed to “district” representation how will that improve upon our current governmental Council? Our Fillmore Unified School District changed to “district” voting not long ago. How many of you know that was changed? How has that benefited our children and/or your representation? Do you know who represents your district? What is his or her name? With our current City Council representation, you have 5 elected officials you can speak with about any issue you have in Fillmore. When you live in a “district” you will have one voice for your issue or ideas. Why, “Resident of Fillmore”, did you agree to this lawsuit involving our beautiful Fillmore? Without fighting this we are spending at least $76,000 on this foolishness when it is not needed. We, in our town, are fully and fairly represented by our current Council. What a waste of funding and tax dollars to spend this to go into the pockets of lawyers and law firms. This is surely a form of Bullying and Extortion. What does the law firm care about our beautiful City of Fillmore? But you, oh “Resident of Fillmore”, should have cared about your city.

Concerned Citizens who love Fillmore