City Council approves funding request for oil museum

February 05, 2003
Santa Paula City Council
By Peggy Kelly Santa Paula TimesThe City Council approved a plan at the Jan. 21st meeting to take a funding request to a state representative to booster the budget of the California Oil Museum.At stake could be a $10,000 annual grant from the California State Division of Oil and Gas, an agency funded by revenues from taxes on state oil production. The West Kern Oil Museum in Taft is a recipient of the Division of Oil and Gas funding program, according to the city staff report.The funding could be obtained under the state Public Resources Code, but first it must be amended to include the California Oil Museum.A state legislator must sponsor the legislation and “during the past four years, this legislation has been requested of Senator Jack O’Connell and Assemblywoman Hannah-Beth Jackson, without success,” noted Brian Yanez, community services director, in his report. “Now, with the inclusion of the City of Santa Paula in Assemblyman Tony Strickland’s district, there be a new opportunity for the city to request legislation to secure Division of Oil and Gas funding for the oil museum.”The funding request letter to Strickland notes that the “California Oil museum is a vital part of the tourism economy of the City of Santa Paula and the Heritage Valley, attracting more than 18,000 visitors annually. More than 80 percent of those visitors come from out-of-town, arriving from Ventura County, Southern California and across the state.”
The effort had support from Bill Guerard, Division of Oil and Gas Director, the letter states, and “funding for the museum from the State Division of Oil and Gas will provide financial assistance to the city in the operation of this landmark museum and historic site.”Included in the letter is an invitation for Strickland to visit the California Oil Museum for a personal tour of the facility.

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