Letters to the Editor

May 07, 2010


To the Editor:

I would like to thank the Santa Paula Fire Department for their time in preparing a Chicken BBQ Fundraiser to help our Track and Field Team with our transportation costs. Without their generous support of volunteering to prepare the dinners and tickets this would not have happened. I, the coaching staff and Santa Paula Track and Field Team would like to give a big shout out to the whole Fire Department, Thank you, Thank you!

I would also like to give a big thank you to our community for stopping by and purchasing dinners and supporting your Track Team. We are hoping to capture our fourth Frontier League crown and with your community support we are getting closer! Go Cardinals!!

Coach Hank Almanza

Assistant Art Rabago

Assistant Susie Gomez

Assistant Fabian Amezcua

Santa Paula

Don’t delay…

To the Editor:

We agree with Delton Lee Johnson’s suggestion to SPESD and SPUHSD in his Letter to the Editor, March 26, 2010: “Lead., follow or get out of the way.” We would add, “And, don’t delay.”

At the Preliminary Public Hearing Michelle Kolbeck stated, “We, the Board, are not against unification…”. SPUHS Board President Christina Urias said that she and other trustees “support the concept of unification….”

Neither Board is against unification, but both prefer to delay …for various reasons. Consequently, they have not agreed to a joint unification process, which would empower the County to put unification on the ballot and would avoid the costs of a second round of hearings in Sacramento.

We understand that change is challenging and that it’s certainly easier to delay than to take action; and we know that savings from merging two administrations into one won’t happen instantly. Still, these are not reasons to delay.

But, we also know that the very survival of SPESD may be in question. SPESD was recently placed on the State’s fiscal early-warning list, partly due to current budget cuts, but also due to putting off tough fiscal decisions in previous years. If SPESD cannot meet its financial obligations, the State could take over the running of the district.

This is not the time to waste funds on unnecessary expenses. With the State Budget crisis, both districts must do more with less by increasing class size, cutting programs and laying off teachers and staff. Every dollar matters.

With unification of the two larger districts, SPESD and SPUHSD, the new unified district will receive the same total dollars, yet costs will be lower without duplicated administrative services. Dollars saved can be spent in our classrooms rather than on administrative expenses.

However, without the consent of all school boards, the County must send its recommendation to the State for a second review before local citizens get their chance to vote. This extra step will take time and add costs for all five school districts.

Now is the time for our Boards to cooperate and pass a joint resolution consenting to a “friendly unification” so that the County may send “unification” directly to the voters without delay or additional cost. The Boards need to put our Kids First!

Unification Group -

Rob Corley

Marcia Edwards

Ginger Gherardi

Santa Paula

Shopping Santa Paula

To the Editor:

I have had a wonderful experience with one of your local stores, Gonzales Furniture.

I live in Ojai and discovered Gonzales Furniture in Santa Paula when I took someone there to buy a bed and mattress about a year ago. The service was exceptional, the owners were caring and helped my friend to get exactly what she wanted.

I thought about them when my bed frame, that I had bought somewhere else, had a problem. I described the problem and told them that I probably needed a new bed frame and would buy one from them.

They told me that they could come to my house, make repairs and save me the money of a new frame. I was so impresses that they were willing to fix the problem and save me money.

They came to my home in Ojai. They were creative in their efforts to solve the problem and I now have a much stronger bed.

I will remain a customer of theirs because I feel valued and supported. This is the best customer service that I have had in a long time.

I recommend this wonderful business for any furniture needs. The owners will help you get exactly what you want.

Gienne Gabriels


Bad behavior – unjust rewards

To the Editor:

The past few years I have eagerly looked forward to the Giant Plant Sale. We arrived about two; I was disappointed by the limited number of hanging plants and the wilted look to many of them, but figured that with the poor economy there were fewer plants donated and that the best ones had probably gone at one when the sale started. We bought a few items and went home satisfied. Imagine my surprise to pick up today’s newspaper and find that in fact the volunteers rewarded bad behavior by opening the sale at 10:30 to the hundreds of boorish people who showed up in the morning.

Rebecca Hicks

Santa Paula

Grateful appreciation

To the Editor:

To the Citizens of Santa Paula,

It is with heart filled gratitude and sincerity that I thank you for the amazing and overwhelming support all of you showed for the Police Department’s canine fundraiser dinner last week.

I thank you, the citizens, for allowing “Rex” and I to serve you. It was truly an awesome experience and I feel fortunate to have had the opportunity to work such a coveted assignment. Your support enables the police department to achieve many future goals for the canine program.

I feel privileged to serve citizens such as you. To all of you, and to all the businesses that unselfishly supported us, THANK YOU! When you see the new canine teams in the community, I encourage you to introduce yourselves.

Sergeant Ryan Smith

Santa Paula Police Department


To the Editor:

I am writing in regards to Mr. Tomas Jina’s opinions on the farm workers’ memorials being built in our lovely city. He thinks these people aren’t “heroes”? But to their families and to a lot of other people these individuals are superheroes! Mr. Jina would not understand because he never lived it.

The agriculture business and its farm workers contribute to a lot of Santa Paula’s greatness and where we are today. If it wasn’t for these workers’ sacrifices and struggles we wouldn’t be Santa Paula. A lot of people won’t work in the fields for hours of pain and sweat to earn a few dollars in order to push their families forward. Some even look down on this labor so to speak.

To me… these people are superheroes. My grandparents, aunts and uncles and even my own mother have worked in the fields to get ahead in life. My grandparents, like many other people had to leave their families to go to a foreign country as “braceros” and do this hard labor to put food on the table. They experienced a lot of discrimination and poor living conditions but they sacrificed it all for their loved ones.

I’m glad they are finally being recognized in a memorial and the highest accolades are extended to everyone who put this together, because yes! These people are “heroes” and should be looked up to for their inspiration and strength to move forward in life no matter what barriers are set in front of them.

Juan Cardona


Good news for California

To the Editor:

Apparently California’s left-wingers have found lots of money -- this good news! Our governor, who denounced Arizona’s new anti-illegal immigration law, apparently believes that we in California CAN afford the cost of public services to illegals: welfare, medical treatment, food stamps, housing assistance, schooling, as well as paying court costs for drug dealers and other criminals and their subsequent incarceration.

As a good American citizen, be sure to ask your state Assemblyman and Senator what is the source of California’s newly found wealth.

David Kaiser

Santa Paula

Relay for Life thank you

To the Editor:

What an amazing city we live in! Santa Paula - you’re fantastic!

This last weekend, under beautiful skies, you showed what is important to you. The 9th Annual Santa Paula American Cancer Society Relay For Life was a surprising success. From Saturday morning to Sunday morning, you showed what it means to be a community, to understand what 24 hours in the life of a cancer patient, survivor, and caregiver is all about, and to remember those who fought the fight.

The motto of the American Cancer Society is “More Birthdays”, and this year we had 175 survivors, who will have another birthday, walk in the Opening Survivor Lap, led by nine-year survivor Supervisor Kathy Long. We had over 1,000 people at Santa Paula High School’s Jones Field to “Celebrate, Remember, and Fight Back” against cancer.

With 45 citizens on our volunteer Steering Committee, who have been working hard for the last 10 months, we reached our goals. Our theme this year was “Lights, Camera, Action, Cure!”, not a Hollywood theme but to honor Santa Paula’s over 100 years of moving making. 61 teams decorated their campsites based on this theme. Our financial goal was $116,000. As we left the field on Sunday, our total raised was over $127,000 with donations still coming in. Incredible! Especially when considering the state of our economy. What an amazing, generous, and caring community!

The teams, and especially the Team Captains, really made this work; that’s where the energy is and they are the heart of Relay.

There are so many to thank. To:

The City of Santa Paula and the City Council for making May 2010 Relay For Life month.

Paul Marietti, Principal, and Robin Gillette, Assistant Principal, of Santa Paula High School for their support and trust, along with Mike Bramlette and his staff for setup and cleanup.

The Santa Paula Fire Fighters Association who volunteered their time to cook our dinner.

The Santa Paula Police Department, Reserves, and Explorers who gave their time and kept us smiling. The Odd Fellows Lodge and Soroptimist for preparing and serving the dinner.

The Santa Paula Times for the articles they published, along with the lovely Peggy Kelly for promoting and supporting our event.

Martha Brown and all the CERT volunteers who controlled vehicle and people traffic.

Sheila Murphy and the Santa Paula Hospital who gave more and more, with special thanks to Lloyd Wyckoff who did anything we need, not for 24 hours but for 48 hours.

The Junior Condor Cancer Crushers who again were the top fundraising team, bringing in over $20,400, and to their teachers – Todd, Mark, Doug, and Tommy (and many others); in the seven year that they have participated, the JCCC raised over $100,000 - not bad for a bunch of kids.

DSR Audio for making us sound like professionals.

Our super sponsors Limoneira Company, along with their team.

Generous contributions from Vintage Production California, Sunfresh USA, Inc., D.S.R Audio, and the Santa Paula Church of Christ. Additional sponsorship was generously given by The Van Der Valk Family, Santa Paula Chevrolet, PW Environmental, Santa Paula Community Bank, Aurora Casting & Engineering, Tlaquepaque Restaurant, FDA Stetler Mortuary, John and Maria Reyes, Garman’s Irish Pub, Pacific Petroleum California, Inc., Progressive Land Management, El Pescador of Santa Paula, United Site Services, Ventura Crane, MG Taylor Equipment, Ventura Pipe and Supply, Arc of Santa Paula. Special thanks Dominos Pizza for our Midnight Pizzas, 316 Concepts for generating and printing our elegant program, and Victor and his Garden Market staff who volunteer their time early Sunday morning to make over 300 breakfast burritos for us.

So many others contributed, just too many to mention, but please know we truly appreciate your involvement and contributions.

Entertainment included Magician James Lantiegne, The Cruise Knights, Element of Surprise Band, Burning’ Sky Bad Company Tribute Bank, Charles Law, DJ Alexis Solis, Donna Nelson and the Isbell Chorus, and Mariachi Inlakech.

And most of all to you, Santa Paula – THANK YOU – you are fabulous people. I’m so fortunate to be part of this community.

We must Celebrate our lives, Remember those who fought, and Fight Back every day to eliminate this horrific disease. If you need help or information regarding cancer or would like to be a part of our 2011 Steering Committee, please call the American Cancer Society at 800.ACS.2345, or http://main.acsevents.org/site/TR?fr_id=20562&pg=entry

With much gratitude and appreciation to the Steering Committee, Teams, and the Community, I am Bob Orlando, Chair of the Santa Paula 2010 ACS Relay For Life.

Bob Orlando

Santa Paula

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